Tuesday, April 21, 2009
With A Little Help From My Friends
I have learned much from other bloggers in the past two and a half years and have been inspired to look for new things in my own world. I have also met people who share my interests and have made some new "flesh and blood" friends as well as on line friends.
Last spring I met Cheryl on a local trail. Her binoculars were a sure sign she was a birder and we have kept in touch since that day. She emailed me the very, very cute picture above of Barn Swallows at her father's farm and wrote,
"As the babies grow the nest seems to get smaller until finally they are forced out. I attached this picture I took last year of a "bursting nest". Note the horse hair... I hope that in the near future you can come and see the barn swallows at the farm. You will be able to watch them from just a few feet away. The timing window of the babies bursting out of the nest is small (maybe a week or so). "
What a great invitation!
Deb is a co-worker who loves nature and birding. We have gone out together several times. She sent me pictures of ducks she found in an out of the way spot, including the Blue-winged Teals above, some Wood Ducks and a Hooded Merganser. I found the area and now have another quiet spot where I can go to observe birds and wildlife. There were no ducks there tonight, but a Kingfisher flew around noisily and a large flock of Wild Turkeys was in a nearby field.
Esther Garvi of Niger has written a couple of interesting comments on recent posts. She sent me this picture of one of their white herons which looks like a Cattle Egret to me.
"We have white herons here in West Africa. They nest in thorny trees and make so much noise, but the worst part here when you are unfortunate enough to have them settle in your garden (and don't have the heart to chase them away) is that their little ones get stuck in the thorns and rot in the trees. A large majority fall down from the tree in their attempts to fly. I imagine in the wild, they would make easy prey for predators but in the city, they starve to death. Although I love the herons when I see them in the bush, I am very grateful not to have a heronry in my yard!"
(If you don't like that mental image, drop in to see this post of hers for a big dose of sweetness.)
My cousin Samuel moved two hours east of here at the end of March. I will miss birding with him. On our last outing he took this great picture of gulls at Lake Ontario. He has moved close to the shores of Lake Ontario and I hope to get over to see him for some new birding experiences.
And so I continue to learn and share, to make new friends and see new places.