Vol. 2, No. 3 – The White-Breasted Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch or Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

White-breasted Nuthatch or Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

From col. F. M. Woodruff. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

THE WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH.

N

EARLY every one readily recognizes this species as it runs up and down and around the branches and trunks of trees in search of insect food, now and then uttering its curious Quauk, quauk, quauk. The White-breasted Nuthatch is often improperly called “Sapsucker,” a name commonly applied to the Downy Woodpecker and others. It is a common breeding bird and usually begins nesting early in April, and two broods are frequently reared in a season. For its nesting place it usually selects the decayed trunk of a tree or stub, ranging all the way from two to sixty feet above the ground. The entrance may be a knot hole, a small opening, or a small round hole with a larger cavity at the end of it. Often the old excavation of the Downy Woodpecker is made use of. Chicken feathers, hair, and a few dry leaves loosely thrown together compose the nest.

This Nuthatch is abundant throughout the State of Illinois, and is a permanent resident everywhere except perhaps of the extreme northern counties. It seems to migrate in spring and return in autumn, but, in reality, as is well known, only retreats to the woodlands to breed, emerging again when the food supply grows scant in the autumn.

The Nuthatches associate familiarly with the Kinglets and Titmice, and often travel with them. Though regarded as shy birds they are not really so. Their habits of restlessness render them difficult of examination. “Tree-mice” is the local name given them by the farmers, and would be very appropriate could they sometimes remain as motionless as that diminutive animal.

Careful observation has disclosed that the Nuthatches do not suck the sap from trees, but that they knock off bits of decayed or loose bark with the beak to obtain the grubs or larvae beneath. They are beneficial to vegetation. Ignorance is responsible for the misapplied names given to many of our well disposed and useful birds, and it would be well if teachers were to discourage the use of inappropriate names and familiarize the children with those recognized by the best authorities.

Referring to the Nuthatches Mr. Baskett says: “They are little bluish gray birds, with white undervests—sometimes a little soiled. Their tails are ridiculously short, and never touch the tree; neither does the body, unless they are suddenly affrighted, when they crouch and look, with their beaks extended, much like a knot with a broken twig on it. I have sometimes put the bird into this attitude by clapping my hands loudly near the window. It is an impulse that seems to come to the bird before flight, especially if the head should be downward. His arrival is sudden, and seems often to be distinguished by turning a somersault before alighting, head downward, on the tree trunk, as if he had changed his mind so suddenly about alighting that it unbalanced him.

“I once saw two Nuthatches at what I then supposed was a new habit. One spring day some gnats were engaged in their little crazy love waltzes in the air, forming small whirling clouds, and the birds left off bark-probing and began capturing insects on the wing. They were awkward about it with their short wings, and had to alight frequently to rest. I went out to them, and so absorbed were they that they allowed me to approach within a yard of a limb that they came to rest upon, where they would sit and pant till they caught their breath, when they went at it again. They seemed fairly to revel in a new diet and a new exercise.”

Summary:

WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH.Sitta carolinensis. Other name: “Sapsucker,” improperly called.

Range—Eastern United States and British Provinces.

Nest—Decayed trunk of tree or stub, from two to six feet from ground, composed of chicken feathers, hair, and dry leaves.

Eggs—Five to eight; white with a roseate tinge, speckled with reddish brown and a slight tinge of purple.


White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) by Matt Wagner

White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) by Matt Wagner

Lee’s Addition:

If a bird’s nest should chance to be before you in the way, in any tree or on the ground, with young ones or eggs, and the mother bird is sitting on the young or on the eggs, you shall not take the mother bird with the young. (Deuteronomy 22:6 AMP)

This bird belongs to the Sittidae – Nuthatches Family and is a cousin to 27 other Nuthatches around the world.

The White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) is a small songbird of the nuthatch family which breeds in old-growth woodland across much of temperate North America. It is a stocky bird, with a large head, short tail, powerful bill and strong feet. The upperparts are pale blue-gray, and the face and underparts are white. It has a black cap and a chestnut lower belly. The nine subspecies differ mainly in the color of the body plumage.

Like other nuthatches, the White-breasted Nuthatch forages for insects on trunks and branches, and is able to move head-first down trees. Seeds form a substantial part of its winter diet, as do acorns and hickory nuts that were stored by the bird in the fall. The nest is in a hole in a tree, and the breeding pair may smear insects around the entrance as a deterrent to squirrels. Adults and young may be killed by hawks, owls and snakes, and forest clearance may lead to local habitat loss, but this is a common species with no major conservation concerns over most of its range.

The White-breasted Nuthatch has a large head, short tail, short wings, a powerful bill and strong feet; it is 5–6 in (13–14 cm) long, with a wingspan of 8–11 in (20–27 cm) and a weight of 0.64–1.06 oz (18–30 g).

The adult male of the nominate subspecies, S. c. carolinensis, has pale blue-gray upperparts, a glossy black cap (crown of the head), and a black band on the upper back. The wing coverts and flight feathers are very dark gray with paler fringes, and the closed wing is pale gray and black, with a thin white wing bar. The face and the underparts are white. The outer tail feathers are black with broad diagonal white bands across the outer three feathers, a feature readily visible in flight.

The female has, on average, a narrower black back band, slightly duller upperparts and buffer underparts than the male. Her cap may be gray, but many females have black caps, and cannot be reliably distinguished from the male in the field. In the northeastern United States, at least 10% of females have black caps, but the proportion rises to 40–80% in the Rocky Mountains, Mexico and the southeastern U.S. Juveniles are similar to the adult, but duller plumaged.

Like other nuthatches, this is a noisy species with a range of vocalizations. The male’s mating song is a rapid nasal qui-qui-qui-qui-qui-qui-qui. The contact call between members of a pair, given most frequently in the fall and winter is a thin squeaky nit, uttered up to 30 times a minute. A more distinctive sound is a shrill kri repeated rapidly with mounting anxiety or excitement kri-kri-kri-kri-kri-kri-kri-kri; the Rocky Mountains and Great Basin subspecies have a higher, faster yididitititit call,[2] and Pacific birds a more nasal beeerf.

Three other, significantly smaller, nuthatches have ranges which overlap that of White-breasted, but none has white plumage completely surrounding the eye. Further distinctions are that the Red-breasted Nuthatch has a black eye line and reddish underparts, and the Brown-headed and Pygmy Nuthatches each have a brown cap, and a white patch on the nape of the neck.

The White-breasted Nuthatch is monogamous, and pairs form following a courtship in which the male bows to the female, spreading his tail and drooping his wings while swaying back and forth; he also feeds her morsels of food. The pair establish a territory and then remain together year-round until one partner dies or disappears. The nest cavity is usually a natural hole in a decaying tree, sometimes an old woodpecker nest. The nest hole is usually 10–40 ft (3–12 m) high in a tree and is lined with fur, fine grass, and shredded bark. The clutch is five to nine eggs which are creamy-white, speckled with reddish brown. The eggs are incubated by the female for 13 to 14 days prior to hatching, and the chicks fledge in a further 18 to 26 days. Both adults feed the chicks in the nest and for about two weeks after fledging, and the male also feeds the female while she is incubating. This species of nuthatch roosts in tree holes or behind loose bark when not breeding, and has the unusual habit of removing its faeces from the roost site in the morning. It usually roosts alone except in very cold weather, when up to 29 birds have been recorded together. (From Wikipedia with editing)

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – Blackburnian Warbler

The Previous Article – The Captive’s Escape

Sharing The Gospel

Links:

Sittidae – Nuthatches Family

White-breasted Nuthatch – All About Birds

White-breasted Nuthatch – Wikipedia

White-breasted Nuthatch – WhatBird

*

Vol. 2, No. 3 – The Captive’s Escape

Bird in Cage ©WikiC

Bird in Cage ©WikiC

THE CAPTIVE’S ESCAPE.

I saw such a sorrowful sight, my dears,
Such a sad and sorrowful sight,
As I lingered under the swaying vines,
In the silvery morning light.
The skies were so blue and the day was so fair
With beautiful things untold,
You would think no sad and sorrowful thing
Could enter its heart of gold.

A fairy-like cage was hanging there,
So gay with turret and dome.
You’d be sure a birdie would gladly make
Such a beautiful place its home.
But a wee little yellow-bird sadly chirped
As it fluttered to and fro;
I know it was longing with all its heart
To its wild-wood home to go.

I heard a whir of swift-rushing wings,
And an answering gladsome note;
As close to its nestlings’ prison bars,
I saw the poor mother bird float.
I saw her flutter and strive in vain
To open the prison door.
Then sadly cling with drooping wing
As if all her hopes were o’er.

But ere I could reach the prison house
And let its sweet captive free,
She was gone like a yellow flash of light,
To her home in a distant tree.
“Poor birdie,” I thought, “you shall surely go,
When mamma comes back again;”
For it hurt me so that so small a thing
Should suffer so much of pain.

And back in a moment she came again
And close to her darling’s side
With a bitter-sweet drop of honey dew,
Which she dropped in its mouth so wide.
Then away, with a strange wild mournful note
Of sorrow, which seemed to say
“Goodbye, my darling, my birdie dear,
Goodbye for many a day.”

A quick wild flutter of tiny wings,
A faint low chirp of pain,
A throb of the little aching heart
And birdie was free again.
Oh sorrowful anguished mother-heart,
’Twas all that she could do,
She had set it free from a captive’s life
In the only way she knew.

Poor little birdie! it never will fly
On tiny and tireless wing.
Through the pearly blue of the summer sky,
Or sing the sweet songs of spring.
And I think, little dears, if you had seen
The same sad sorrowful sight,
You never would cage a free wild bird
To suffer a captive’s plight.
—Mary Morrison.


Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) at Zoo Miami by Lee

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) at Zoo Miami by Lee

Lee’s Addition:

As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit and treachery; therefore they have become great and grown rich, (Jeremiah 5:27 AMP)

It is always sad to see the birds in a cage. Yes, I enjoy seeing birds from foreign lands and also birds that are endangered at the Zoos. Most Zoos have Aviaries which let the birds fly around more freely, but even they “cage” them at times. We were just at the Zoo this past week and they added some new Cockatoos. Unfortunately, they are in cages, large cages, but still cages. One of the few times I have really felt sorry for them. It makes it hard to photograph through those wire also.

Zoo Miami’s Wings of Asia was one of the nicest Aviaries I have been to so far. They have around 54,ooo square feet of space to fly around in and it is very well landscaped. Made me feel like I was outside actually “birdwatching.” You had to really search for many of the birds, not just look in a cage. We go to Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa and they have a several nice sized aviaries for the birds to fly around in and not feel so “couped up.”

This just happened to be the one of the next articles we have been covering in the Birds Illustrated by Color Photography.

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The White-Breasted Nuthatch

The Previous Article – How The Birds Secured Their Rights

Gospel Presentation

*

Vol. 2, No. 3 – How The Birds Secured Their Rights

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia) by Ray

Song Sparrow by Ray

HOW THE BIRDS SECURED THEIR RIGHTS.

Deuteronomy xxxii 6-7.—“If a bird’s nest chance to be before thee in the way, in any tree, or on the ground, young ones or eggs, and the dam sitting upon the young, or upon the eggs, thou shalt not take the dam with the young. But thou shalt in anywise let the dam go, that it may be well with thee, and that thou may prolong thy days.”

I

T is said that the following petition was instrumental in securing the adoption in Massachusetts of a law prohibiting the wearing of song and insectivorous birds on women’s hats. It is stated that the interesting document was prepared by United States Senator Hoar. The foregoing verse of Scripture might have been quoted by the petitioning birds to strengthen their position before the lawmakers:

“To the Great and General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: We, the song birds of Massachusetts and their playfellows, make this our humble petition. We know more about you than you think we do. We know how good you are. We have hopped about the roofs and looked in at the windows of the houses you have built for poor and sick and hungry people, and little lame and deaf and blind children. We have built our nests in the trees and sung many a song as we flew about the gardens and parks you have made so beautiful for your children, especially your poor children, to play in. Every year we fly a great way over the country, keeping all the time where the sun is bright and warm. And we know that whenever you do anything the other people all over this great land between the seas and the great lakes find it out, and pretty soon will try to do the same. We know. We know.

“We are Americans just the same as you are. Some of us, like some of you, came across the great sea. But most of the birds like us have lived here a long while; and the birds like us welcomed your fathers when they came here many, many years ago. Our fathers and mothers have always done their best to please your fathers and mothers.

“Now we have a sad story to tell you. Thoughtless or bad people are trying to destroy us. They kill us because our feathers are beautiful. Even pretty and sweet girls, who we should think would be our best friends, kill our brothers and children so that they may wear our plumage on their hats. Sometimes people kill us for mere wantonness. Cruel boys destroy our nests and steal our eggs and our young ones. People with guns and snares lie in wait to kill us; as if the place for a bird were not in the sky, alive, but in a shop window or in a glass case. If this goes on much longer all our song birds will be gone. Already we are told in some other countries that used to be full of birds they are now almost gone. Even the Nightingales are being killed in Italy.

“Now we humbly pray that you will stop all this and will save us from this sad fate. You have already made a law that no one shall kill a harmless song bird or destroy our nests or our eggs. Will you please make another one that no one shall wear our feathers, so that no one shall kill us to get them? We want them all ourselves. Your pretty girls are pretty enough without them. We are told that it is as easy for you to do it as for a blackbird to whistle.

“If you will, we know how to pay you a hundred times over. We will teach your children to keep themselves clean and neat. We will show them how to live together in peace and love and to agree as we do in our nests. We will build pretty houses which you will like to see. We will play about your garden and flowerbeds—ourselves like flowers on wings—without any cost to you. We will destroy the wicked insects and worms that spoil your cherries and currants and plums and apples and roses. We will give you our best songs, and make the spring more beautiful and the summer sweeter to you. Every June morning when you go out into the field, Oriole and Bluebird and Blackbird and Bobolink will fly after you, and make the day more delightful to you. And when you go home tired after sundown Vesper Sparrow will tell you how grateful we are. When you sit down on your porch after dark, Fifebird and Hermit Thrush and Wood Thrush will sing to you; and even Whip-poor-will will cheer you up a little. We know where we are safe. In a little while all the birds will come to live in Massachusetts again, and everybody who loves music will like to make a summer home with you.”

The singers are:

Brown Thrasher, King Bird,
Robert o’Lincoln, Swallow,
Vesper Sparrow, Cedar Bird,
Hermit Thrush, Cow-bird,
Robin Redbreast, Martin,
Song Sparrow, Veery,
Scarlet Tanager, Vireo,
Summer Redbird, Oriole,
Blue Heron, Blackbird,
Humming Bird, Fifebird,
Yellow-bird, Wren,
Whip-poor-will, Linnet,
Water Wagtail, Pewee,
Woodpecker, Phoebe,
Pigeon Woodpecker, Yoke Bird,
Indigo Bird, Lark,
Yellow Throat, Sandpiper,
Wilson’s Thrush, Chewink.
Chickadee,

Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) by Kent Nickell

Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) by Kent Nickell

Lee’s Addition:

By them the birds of the heavens have their home; They sing among the branches. (Psalms 104:12 NKJV)

Things were tough for the birds back in 1897 and I guess they wanted their rights protected. This was one way to do it. Thankfully, today there is very few of the feathers and birds being stuck on hats for the ladies. Most don’t wear hats these days. Hunters still hunt, but not so much for “Songbirds.” Unfortunately young folks still like to cause problems for the birds instead of enjoying their songs and antics. They fail to realize the beauty of God’s created avian critters. Several groups became concerned and several laws were passed to protect the birds.

See National Council of Women about this hat campaign.

Lacey Act

By the late 1800s, the hunting and shipment of birds for the commercial market (to embellish the platters of elegant restaurants) and the plume trade (to provide feathers to adorn lady’s fancy hats) had taken their toll on many bird species. Passenger pigeons, whose immense flocks had once darkened the skies, were nearing extinction. Populations of the Eskimo curlew and other shorebirds had been decimated. The snowy egret and other colonial-nesting wading birds had been reduced to mere remnants of their historical populations. The Lacey Act (passed on May 25, 1900) prohibited game taken illegally in one state to be shipped across state boundaries contrary to the laws of the state where taken. The Lacey Act has become a very effective tool for enforcing the wildlife protective laws of the States and the Federal government (a detailed synopsis is available). However, in the early years of the 20th century the Act was ineffective in stopping interstate shipments, largely because of the huge profits enjoyed by the market hunters and the lack of officers to enforce the law. These early failures of the Lacey Act led to passage of the Weeks-McLean Law. (The Migratory Bird Program – Conserving America’s Birds – U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service)

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The Captive’s Escape

The Previous Article – The Mourning Dove

Gospel Message

Links:

Birds Vol 1 #5 – National Council of Women

The Migratory Bird Program – Conserving America’s Birds – U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 – Wikipedia

*

Vol. 2, No. 3 – The Ruby-Crowned Kinglet

The Ruby-crowned Kinglet for Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

The Ruby-crowned Kinglet for Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

THE RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET.

B

ASKETT says that the Kinglets come at a certain early spring date before the leaves are fully expanded, and flutter upward, while they take something from beneath the budding leaf or twig. It is a peculiar motion, which with their restless ways, olive-green color, and small size, readily distinguishes them. It is rare that one is still. “But the ruby-crowned sometimes favors me with a song, and as it is a little long, he usually is quiet till done. It is one of the sweetest little lullaby-like strains. One day I saw him in the rose bush just near voluntarily expand the plumage of his crown and show the brilliant golden-ruby feathers beneath. Usually they are mostly concealed. It was a rare treat, and visible to me only because of my rather exalted view. He generally reserves this display for his mate, but he was here among some Snow-birds and Tree Sparrows, and seemed to be trying to make these plain folks envious of the pretty feathers in his hat.”

These wonderfully dainty little birds are of great value to the farmer and the fruit grower, doing good work among all classes of fruit trees by killing grubs and larvae. In spite of their value in this respect, they have been, in common with many other attractive birds, recklessly killed for millinery purposes.

It is curious to see these busy wanderers, who are always cheery and sociable, come prying and peering about the fruit trees, examining every little nook of possible concealment with the greatest interest. They do not stay long after November, and return again in April.

The nest of this Kinglet is rarely seen. It is of matted hair, feathers, moss, etc., bulky, round, and partly hanging. Until recently the eggs were unknown. They are of a dirty cream-white, deepening at larger end to form a ring, some specimens being spotted.

Mr. Nehrling, who has heard this Kinglet sing in central Wisconsin and northern Illinois, speaks of the “power, purity, and volume of the notes, their faultless modulation and long continuance,” and Dr. Elliott Coues says of it: “The Kinglet’s exquisite vocalization defies description.” Dr. Brewer says that its song is clear, resonant, and high, a prolonged series, varying from the lowest tones to the highest, and terminating with the latter. It may be heard at quite a distance, and in some respects bears more resemblance to the song of the English Sky-lark than to that of the Canary, to which Mr. Audubon compares it.

From col. F. M. Woodruff. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

Summary:

RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET.Regulus calendula.

Range—Entire North America, wintering in the South and in northern Central America.

Nest—Very rare, only six known; of hair, feathers, moss, etc., bulky, globular, and partly pensile.

Eggs—Five to nine; dull whitish or pale puffy, speckled.


Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

Lee’s Addition:

He will bless those who fear the LORD, Both small and great. (Psalms 115:13 NKJV)

Then a voice came from the throne, saying, “Praise our God, all you His servants and those who fear Him, both small and great!” (Revelation 19:5 NKJV)

“Kinglets are among the smallest of all passerines, ranging in size from 3.2–4.3 in (8–11 cm) and weighing 0.2–0.3 oz (6–8 g); the sexes are the same size. They have medium-length wings and tails, and small needle-like bills. The plumage is overall grey-green, offset by pale wingbars, and the tail tip is incised. Five species have a single stiff feather covering the nostrils, but in the Ruby-crowned Kinglet, this is replaced by several short, stiff bristles. Most kinglets have distinctive head markings, and the males possess a colourful crown patch. In the females, the crown is duller and yellower. The long feathers forming the central crown stripe can be erected; they are inconspicuous most of the time, but are used in courtship and territorial displays when the raised crest is very striking.” (Kinglet-Wikipedia)

“The Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) is a very small passerine bird found throughout North America. The bird has olive-green plumage with two white wing bars and a white eye-ring. Males have a red crown patch, which is usually concealed. The sexes are identical (apart from the crown), and juveniles are similar in plumage to adults. It is one of the smallest songbirds in North America.

The kinglet is migratory, and its range extends from northwest Canada and Alaska south to Mexico. Its breeding habitat is spruce-fir forests in the northern, mountainous, United States and Canada. The Ruby-crowned Kinglet builds a cup-shaped nest, which may be pensile or placed on a tree branch and is often hidden. It lays up to 12 eggs, and has the largest clutch of any North American passerine for its size. It is mainly insectivorous, but also eats fruits and seeds.” (Ruby-crowned Kinglet-Wikipedia)

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The Mourning Dove

The Previous Article – The Phoebe

Sharing The Gospel

Links:

Regulidae – Goldcrests, Kinglets

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – Wikipedia

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – Whatbird

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – IBC

*

Vol. 2, No. 3 – The House Wren

image
From col. F. M. Woodruff. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

THE HOUSE WREN.

“It was a merry time
When Jenny Wren was young,
When prettily she looked,
And sweetly, too, she sung.”

N

N looking over an old memorandum book the other day,” says Col. S. T. Walker, of Florida, “I came across the following notes concerning the nesting of the House Wren. I was sick at the time, and watched the whole proceeding, from the laying of the first stick to the conclusion. The nest was placed in one of the pigeonholes of my desk, and the birds effected an entrance to the room through sundry cracks in the log cabin.”

Nest begun April 15th.
Nest completed and first egg laid April 27th.
Last egg laid May 3rd.
Began sitting May 4th.
Hatching completed May 18th.
Young began to fly May 27th.
Young left the nest June 1st.
Total time occupied 47 days.

Such is the usual time required for bringing forth a brood of this species of Wren, which is the best known of the family. In the Atlantic states it is more numerous than in the far west, where wooded localities are its chosen haunts, and where it is equally at home in the cottonwoods of the river valleys, and on the aspens just below the timber line on lofty mountains.

Mrs. Osgood Wright says very quaintly that the House Wren is a bird who has allowed the word male to be obliterated from its social constitution at least: that we always speak of Jenny Wren: always refer to the Wren as sheas we do of a ship. That it is Johnny Wren who sings and disports himself generally, but it is Jenny, who, by dint of much scolding and fussing, keeps herself well to the front. She chooses the building-site and settles all the little domestic details. If Johnny does not like her choice, he may go away and stay away; she will remain where she has taken up her abode and make a second matrimonial venture.

The House Wren’s song is a merry one, sudden, abruptly ended, and frequently repeated. It is heard from the middle of April to October, and upon the bird’s arrival it at once sets about preparing its nest, a loose heap of sticks with a soft lining, in holes, boxes, and the like. From six to ten tiny, cream-colored eggs are laid, so thickly spotted with brown that the whole egg is tinged.

The House Wren is not only one of our most interesting and familiar neighbors, but it is useful as an exterminator of insects, upon which it feeds. Frequently it seizes small butterflies when on the wing. We have in mind a sick child whose convalescence was hastened and cheered by the near-by presence of the merry House Wren, which sings its sweet little trilling song, hour after hour, hardly stopping long enough to find food for its meals.

Summary:

HOUSE WREN.Troglodytes aedon.

Range—Eastern United States and southern Canada, west to the Mississippi Valley; winters in southern portions.

Nest—Miscellaneous rubbish, sticks, grasses, hay, and the like.

Eggs—Usually seven; white, dotted with reddish brown.


House Wren Proof Shot by Lee at Circle B

House Wren Proof Shot by Lee at Circle B – Cropped

Lee’s Addition:

Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works. (1 Chronicles 16:9 KJV)

What a neat little bird. I was thrilled to get to see one up close just this last Saturday. We don’t see them often, at least I don’t. We were birdwatching out at Circle B Bar Reserve and the Wren just sat there and sang while three of us tried to get its picture. My photos are not so good, but at least they are a “proof shot.” I have heard and seen the Carolina Wren out there occasionally, but not the House.

House Wren Proof Shot Singing cropped

House Wren Proof Shot Singing cropped

*

Now here is a real photo by a much better photographer:

House Wren (Troglodytes aedon) by Ray

House Wren (Troglodytes aedon) by Ray

Wrens belong to the Wrens – Troglodytidae Family which has 83 species at present. “The wrens are mostly small, brownish passerine birds in the mainly New World family Troglodytidae. Only the Eurasian Wren occurs in the Old World, where in Anglophone regions it is commonly known simply as the “wren” as it is the originator of the name. The name wren has been applied to other unrelated birds, particularly the New Zealand wrens (Acanthisittidae) and the Australian wrens (Maluridae).

Most wrens are small and rather inconspicuous, except for their loud and often complex songs. Notable exceptions are the relatively large members of the genus Campylorhynchus, which can be quite bold in their behavior. Wrens have short wings that are barred in most species, and they often hold their tails upright. As far as known, wrens are primarily insectivorous, eating insects, spiders and other small arthropods, but many species also eat vegetable matter and some will take small frogs/lizards.

The House Wren, (Troglodytes aedon), is a very small songbird of the wren family, Troglodytidae. It occurs from Canada to southernmost South America, and is thus the most widely distributed bird in the Americas. It occurs in most suburban areas in its range and it is the single most common wren. Its taxonomy is highly complex and some subspecies groups are often considered separate species.

Adults are 4.3 to 5.1 in (11 to 13 cm) long, with a 5.9 in (15 cm) wingspan and weigh about 0.35 to 0.42 oz (10 to 12 g ). Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 1.9 to 2.1 in (4.7 to 5.3 cm), the tail is 1.5 to 1.7 in (3.9 to 4.4 cm),  The subspecies vary greatly, with upper parts ranging from dull greyish-brown to rich rufescent-brown, and the underparts ranging from brown, over buff and pale grey, to pure white. All subspecies have blackish barring to the wings and tail, and some also to the flanks. All subspecies show a faint eye-ring and eyebrow and have a long, thin bill with a blackish upper mandible, and a black-tipped yellowish or pale grey lower mandible. The legs are pinkish or grey. The short tail is typically held cocked.

This bird’s rich bubbly song is commonly heard during the nesting season but rarely afterwards. There is marked geographical variation in its song, though somewhat more gradual than in the birds’ outward appearance which can strikingly differ e.g. on neighboring islands in the Caribbean. Birds from far north and south of the species’ range nonetheless have songs that differ markedly.” (Wikipedia w/editing)

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for May 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The Phoebe

The Previous Article – The Ruby-Throated Humming Bird

Gospel Message

Links:

Wrens – Troglodytidae Family

House Wren – All About Birds

House Wren – Wikipedia

Vol. 2, No. 3 – The Ruby-Throated Humming Bird

The Ruby-throated Humming Bird or Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

The Ruby-throated Humming Bird or Birds Illustrated by Color Photography, 1897

THE RUBY-THROATED HUMMING BIRD.

Is it a gem, half bird,
Or is it a bird, half gem?
—Edgar Fawcett.

O

F all animated beings this is the most elegant in form and the most brilliant in colors, says the great naturalist Buffon. The stones and metals polished by our arts are not comparable to this jewel of Nature. She has it least in size of the order of birds, maxime miranda in minimis. Her masterpiece is the Humming bird, and upon it she has heaped all the gifts which the other birds may only share. Lightness, rapidity, nimbleness, grace, and rich apparel all belong to this little favorite. The emerald, the ruby, and the topaz gleam upon its dress. It never soils them with the dust of earth, and its aerial life scarcely touches the turf an instant. Always in the air, flying from flower to flower, it has their freshness as well as their brightness. It lives upon their nectar, and dwells only in the climates where they perennially bloom.

All kinds of Humming birds are found in the hottest countries of the New World. They are quite numerous and seem to be confined between the two tropics, for those which penetrate the temperate zones in summer stay there only a short time. They seem to follow the sun in its advance and retreat; and to fly on the zephyr wing after an eternal spring.

The smaller species of the Humming birds are less in size than the great fly wasp, and more slender than the drone. Their beak is a fine needle and their tongue a slender thread. Their little black eyes are like two shining points, and the feathers of their wings so delicate that they seem transparent. Their short feet, which they use very little, are so tiny one can scarcely see them. They rarely alight during the day. They have a swift continual humming flight. The movement of their wings is so rapid that when pausing in the air, the bird seems quite motionless. One sees him stop before a blossom, then dart like a flash to another, visiting all, plunging his tongue into their hearts, flattening them with his wings, never settling anywhere, but neglecting none. He hastens his inconsistencies only to pursue his loves more eagerly and to multiply his innocent joys. For this light lover of flowers lives at their expense without ever blighting them. He only pumps their honey, and for this alone his tongue seems designed.

The vivacity of these small birds is only equaled by their courage, or rather their audacity. Sometimes they may be seen furiously chasing birds twenty times their size, fastening upon their bodies, letting themselves be carried along in their flight, while they peck fiercely until their tiny rage is satisfied. Sometimes they fight each other vigorously. Impatience seems their very essence. If they approach a blossom and find it faded, they mark their spite by a hasty rending of the petals. Their only voice is a weak cry of Screp, screp, frequent and repeated, which they utter in the woods from dawn until at the first rays of the sun they all take flight and scatter over the country.

The Ruby-throat is the only native Humming bird of eastern North America, where it is a common summer resident from May to October, breeding from Florida to Labrador. The nest is a circle an inch and a half in diameter, made of fern wood, plant down, and so forth, shingled with lichens to match the color of the branch on which it rests. Its only note is a shrill, mouse-like squeak.
From col. F. M. Woodruff. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird by Ray’s Wildlife

THE RUBY-THROATED HUMMING BIRD.

Dear Young Folks:

I fancy you think I cannot stop long enough to tell you a story, even about myself. It is true, I am always busy with the flowers, drinking their honey with my long bill, as you must be busy with your books, if you would learn what they teach. I always select for my food the sweetest flowers that grow in the garden.

Do you think you would be vain if you had my beautiful colors to wear? Of course, you would not, but so many of my brothers and sisters have been destroyed to adorn the bonnets and headdresses of the thoughtless that the children cannot be too early taught to love us too well to do us harm. Have you ever seen a ruby? It is one of the most valued of gems. It is the color of my throat, and from its rare and brilliant beauty I get a part of my name. The ruby is worn by great ladies and, with the emerald and topaz, whose bright colors I also wear, is much esteemed as an ornament.

If you will come into the garden in the late afternoon, between six and seven o’clock, when I am taking my supper, and when the sun is beginning to close his great eye, you will see his rays shoot sidewise and show all the splendor of my plumage. You will see me, too, if your eyes are sharp enough, draw up my tiny claws, pause in front of a rose, and remain seemingly motionless. But listen, and you will hear the reason for my name—a tense humming sound. Some call me a Hummer indeed.

I spend only half the year in the garden, coming in May and saying farewell in October. After my mate and I are gone you may find our nest. But your eyes will be sharp indeed if they detect it when the leaves are on the trees, it is so small and blends with the branches. We use fern-wool and soft down to build it, and shingle it with lichens to match the branch it nests upon. You should see the tiny eggs of pure white. But we, our nest and our eggs, are so dainty and delicate that they should never be touched. We are only to be looked at and admired.

Farewell. Look for me when you go a-Maying.

Ruby.

Summary:

RUBY-THROATED HUMMING BIRD.Trochilus colubris.

Range—Eastern North America to the Plains north to the fur countries, and south in winter to Cuba and Veragua.

Nest—A circle an inch and a half in diameter, made of fern wool, etc., shingled with lichens to match the color of the branch on which it is saddled.

Eggs—Two; pure white, the size of soup beans.


Hummingbird nest in Central Am by Bob-Nan

Hummingbird nest by Bob-Nan

Lee’s Addition:

Like birds hovering, so will the Lord of hosts defend Jerusalem; He will protect and deliver it, He will pass over and spare and preserve it. (Isaiah 31:5 AMP)

The Lord has created another fantastic little bird. The Ruby-Throated Hummingbird is 7–9 cm (2.8–3.5 in) long and has a 8–11 cm (3.1–4.3 in) wingspan.  Adults are metallic green above and greyish white below, with near-black wings. Their bill, at up to 2 cm (0.79 in), is long, straight and very slender. As in all hummingbirds, the toes and feet of this species are quite small, with a middle toe of around 0.6 cm (0.24 in) and a tarsus of approximately 0.4 cm (0.16 in). The Ruby-throated Hummingbird can only shuffle if it wants to move along a branch, though it can scratch its head and neck with its feet.

Hummingbirds have many skeletal and flight muscle adaptations which allow the bird great agility in flight. Muscles make up 25-30% of their body weight, and they have long, blade-like wings that, unlike the wings of other birds, connect to the body only from the shoulder joint. This adaptation allows the wing to rotate almost 180°, enabling the bird to fly not only forward but fly backwards, and to hover in front of flowers as it feeds on nectar, or hovers mid-air to catch tiny insects. Hummingbirds are the only known birds that can fly backwards. During hovering, (and likely other modes of flight) ruby-throated hummingbird wings beat 55 times per second.

The Hummingbirds are in the Trochilidae – Hummingbirds Family and there are 342 species (IOC 3.1) members. I think they are one of the neatest families that the Creator designed. They are so colorful and many have an iridescent shine to them when they turn in the sun just the right way.

The Ruby-Throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) is a small hummingbird. It is the only species of hummingbird that regularly nests east of the Mississippi River in North America.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) -Turkey Run SP

Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) -Turkey Run SP by Lee

The breeding habitat is throughout most of eastern North America and the Canadian prairies, in deciduous and pine forests and forest edges, orchards, and gardens. The female builds a nest in a protected location in a shrub or a tree. Of all North American hummingbirds, this species has the largest breeding range.

The Ruby-Throated Hummingbird is migratory, spending most of the winter in southern Mexico, Central America as far south as South America, and the West Indies. It breeds throughout the eastern United States, east of the 100th meridian, and in southern Canada in eastern and mixed deciduous forest. In winter, it is seen mostly in Mexico.

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The House Wren

The Previous Article – The Cuckoo

Wordless Birds

Links:

Ruby-throated Hummingbird – All About Birds

Ruby-throated Hummingbird – Wikipedia

Ruby-throated Hummingbird – National Geographic

Vol. 2, No. 3 – The Hermit Thrush

THE HERMIT THRUSH.

I

N John Burroughs’ “Birds and Poets” this master singer is described as the most melodious of our songsters, with the exception of the Wood Thrush, a bird whose strains, more than any other’s, express harmony and serenity, and he complains that no merited poetic monument has yet been reared to it. But there can be no good reason for complaining of the absence of appreciative prose concerning the Hermit. One writer says: “How pleasantly his notes greet the ear amid the shrieking of the wind and the driving snow, or when in a calm and lucid interval of genial weather we hear him sing, if possible, more richly than before. His song reminds us of a coming season when the now dreary landscape will be clothed in a blooming garb befitting the vernal year—of the song of the Blackbird and Lark, and hosts of other tuneful throats which usher in that lovely season. Should you disturb him when singing he usually drops down and awaits your departure, though sometimes he merely retires to a neighboring tree and warbles as sweetly as before.”

In “Birdcraft” Mrs. Wright tells us, better than any one else, the story of the Hermit. She says: “This spring, the first week in May, when standing at the window about six o’clock in the morning, I heard an unusual note, and listened, thinking it at first a Wood Thrush and then a Thrasher, but soon finding that it was neither of these I opened the window softly and looked among the near by shrubs, with my glass. The wonderful melody ascended gradually in the scale as it progressed, now trilling, now legato, the most perfect, exalted, unrestrained, yet withal, finished bird song that I ever heard. At the first note I caught sight of the singer perching among the lower sprays of a dogwood tree. I could see him perfectly: it was the Hermit Thrush. In a moment he began again. I have never heard the Nightingale, but those who have say that it is the surroundings and its continuous night singing that make it even the equal of our Hermit; for, while the Nightingales sing in numbers in the moonlit groves, the Hermit tunes his lute sometimes in inaccessible solitudes, and there is something immaterial and immortal about the song.”

The Hermit Thrush is comparatively common in the northeast, and in Pennsylvania it is, with the exception of the Robin, the commonest of the Thrushes. In the eastern, as in many of the middle states, it is only a migrant. It is usually regarded as a shy bird. It is a species of more general distribution than any of the small Thrushes, being found entirely across the continent and north to the Arctic regions. It is not quite the same bird, however, in all parts of its range, the Rocky Mountain region being occupied by a larger, grayer race, while on the Pacific coast a dwarf race takes its place. It is known in parts of New England as the “Ground Swamp Robin,” and in other localities as “Swamp Angel.”

True lovers of nature find a certain spiritual satisfaction in the song of this bird. “In the evening twilight of a June day,” says one of these, “when all nature seemed resting in quiet, the liquid, melting, lingering notes of the solitary bird would steal out upon the air and move us strangely. What was the feeling it awoke in our hearts? Was it sorrow or joy, fear or hope, memory or expectation? And while we listened, we thought the meaning of it all was coming; it was trembling on the air, and in an instant it would reach us. Then it faded, it was gone, and we could not even remember what it had been.”


image
From col. F. M. Woodruff. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

THE HERMIT THRUSH.

I am sorry, children, that I cannot give you a specimen of my song as an introduction to the short story of my life. One writer about my family says it is like this: “O spheral, spheral! O holy, holy! O clear away, clear away! O clear up, clear up!” as if I were talking to the weather. May be my notes do sound something like that, but I prefer you should hear me sing when I am alone in the woods, and other birds are silent. It is ever being said of me that I am as fine a singer as the English Nightingale. I wish I could hear this rival of mine, and while I have no doubt his voice is a sweet one, and I am not too vain of my own, I should like to “compare notes” with him. Why do not some of you children ask your parents to invite a few pairs of Nightingales to come and settle here? They would like our climate, and would, I am sure, be welcomed by all the birds with a warmth not accorded the English Sparrow, who has taken possession and, in spite of my love for secret hiding places, will not let even me alone.

When you are older, children, you can read all about me in another part of Birds. I will merely tell you here that I live with you only from May to October, coming and going away in company with the other Thrushes, though I keep pretty well to myself while here, and while building my nest and bringing up my little ones I hide myself from the face of man, although I do not fear his presence. That is why I am called the Hermit.

If you wish to know in what way I am unlike my cousin Thrushes in appearance, turn to pages Brown Thrush and Wood Thrush, Vol. 1, of Birds. There you will see their pictures. I am one of the smallest of the family, too. Some call me “the brown bird with the rusty tail,” and other names have been fitted to me, as Ground Gleaner, Tree Trapper, and Seed Sower. But I do not like nicknames, and am just plain,

Hermit Thrush.

Summary:

HERMIT THRUSH.Turdus aonalaschkæ pallasii. Other names: “Swamp Angel,” “Ground Swamp Robin.”

Range—Eastern North America, breeding from northern United States northward; wintering from about latitude 40° to the Gulf coast.

Nest—On the ground, in some low, secluded spot, beneath shelter of deep shrubbery. Bulky and loosely made of leaves, bark, grasses, mosses, lined with similar finer material.

Eggs—Three or four; of greenish blue, unspotted.


Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus) ©USFWS

Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus) ©USFWS

Lee’s Addition:

I know all the birds of the mountains, And the wild beasts of the field are Mine. (Psa 50:11)

The Hermit Thrush’s song is ethereal and flute-like, consisting of a beginning note, then several descending musical phrases in a minor key, repeated at different pitches. They often sing from a high open location.

The Hermit Thrush is one of 185 species in the Turdidae – Thrushes Family.

Sorry this is a little short, but I am away checking out the birds.

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The Song Sparrow

The Previous Article – The Yellow Warbler

Gospel Message

Links:

Turdidae – Thrushes Family

Hermit Thrush – All About Birds

Hermit Thrush – Wikipedia

*

Vol. 2, No. 3 – Bird Song – September

American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by J Fenton

American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by J Fenton

BIRD SONG.

How songs are made
Is a mystery,
Which studied for years
Still baffles me.
—R. H. Stoddard.

S

OME birds are poets and sing all summer,” says Thoreau. “They are the true singers. Any man can write verses in the love season. We are most interested in those birds that sing for the love of music, and not of their mates; who meditate their strains and amuse themselves with singing; the birds whose strains are of deeper sentiment.”

Thoreau does not mention by name any of the poet-birds to which he alludes, but we think our selections for the present month include some of them. The most beautiful specimen of all, which is as rich in color and “sun-sparkle” as the most polished gem to which he owes his name, the Ruby-throated Humming Bird, cannot sing at all, uttering only a shrill mouse-like squeak. The humming sound made by his wings is far more agreeable than his voice, for “when the mild gold stars flower out” it announces his presence. Then

“A dim shape quivers about
Some sweet rich heart of a rose.”

He hovers over all the flowers that possess the peculiar sweetness that he loves—the blossoms of the honeysuckle, the red, the white, and the yellow roses, and the morning glory. The red clover is as sweet to him as to the honey bee, and a pair of them may often be seen hovering over the blossoms for a moment, and then disappearing with the quickness of a flash of light, soon to return to the same spot and repeat the performance. Squeak, squeak! is probably their call note.

Something of the poet is the Yellow Warbler, though his song is not quite as long as an epic. He repeats it a little too often, perhaps, but there is such a pervading cheerfulness about it that we will not quarrel with the author. Sweet-sweet-sweet-sweet-sweet-sweeter-sweeter! is his frequent contribution to the volume of nature, and all the while he is darting about the trees, “carrying sun-glints on his back wherever he goes.” His song is appropriate to every season, but it is in the spring, when we hear it first, that it is doubly welcome to the ear. The grateful heart asks with Bourdillon:

“What tidings hath the Warbler heard
That bids him leave the lands of summer
For woods and fields where April yields
Bleak welcome to the blithe newcomer?”

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) by Quy Tran

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) by Quy Tran

The Mourning Dove may be called the poet of melancholy, for its song is, to us, without one element of cheerfulness. Hopeless despair is in every note, and, as the bird undoubtedly does have cheerful moods, as indicated by its actions, its song must be appreciated only by its mate. Coo-o, coo-o! suddenly thrown upon the air and resounding near and far is something hardly to be extolled, we should think, and yet the beautiful and graceful Dove possesses so many pretty ways that every one is attracted to it, and the tender affection of the mated pair is so manifest, and their constancy so conspicuous, that the name has become a symbol of domestic concord.

The Cuckoo must utter his note in order to be recognized, for few that are learned in bird lore can discriminate him save from his notes. He proclaims himself by calling forth his own name, so that it is impossible to make a mistake about him. Well, his note is an agreeable one and has made him famous. As he loses his song in the summer months, he is inclined to make good use of it when he finds it again. English boys are so skillful in imitating the Cuckoo’s song, which they do to an exasperating extent, that the bird himself may often wish for that of the Nightingale, which is inimitable.

But the Cuckoo’s song, monotonous as it is, is decidedly to be preferred to that of the female House Wren, with its Chit-chit-chit-chit, when suspicious or in anger. The male, however, is a real poet, let us say—and sings a merry roulade, sudden, abruptly ended, and frequently repeated. He sings, apparently, for the love of music, and is as merry and gay when his mate is absent as when she is at his side, proving that his singing is not solely for her benefit.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

So good an authority as Dr. Coues vouches for the exquisite vocalization of the Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Have you ever heard a wire vibrating? Such is the call note of the Ruby, thin and metallic. But his song has a fullness, a variety, and a melody, which, being often heard in the spring migration, make this feathered beauty additionally attractive. Many of the fine songsters are not brilliantly attired, but this fellow has a combination of attractions to commend him as worthy of the bird student’s careful attention.

Of the Hermit Thrush, whose song is celebrated, we will say only, “Read everything you can find about him.” He will not be discovered easily, for even Olive Thorne Miller, who is presumed to know all about birds, tells of her pursuit of the Hermit in northern New York, where it was said to be abundant, and finding, when she looked for him, that he had always “been there” and was gone. But one day in August she saw the bird and heard the song and exclaimed: “This only was lacking—this crowns my summer.”

Song Sparrow

Phoebe

White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) by Matt Wagner

White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) by Matt Wagner

White-breasted Nuthatch

The Song Sparrow can sing too, and the Phoebe, beloved of man, and the White-breasted Nuthatch, a little. They do not require the long-seeking of the Hermit Thrush, whose very name implies that he prefers to flock by himself, but can be seen in our parks throughout the season. But the Sparrow loves the companionship of man, and has often been a solace to him. It is stated by the biographer of Kant, the great metaphysician, that at the age of eighty he had become indifferent to much that was passing around him in which he had formerly taken great interest. The flowers showed their beautious hues to him in vain; his weary vision gave little heed to their loveliness; their perfume came unheeded to the sense which before had inhaled it with eagerness. The coming on of spring, which he had been accustomed to hail with delight, now gave him no joy save that it brought back a little Sparrow, which came annually and made its home in a tree that stood by his window. Year after year, as one generation went the way of all the earth, another would return to its birth-place to reward the tender care of their benefactor by singing to him their pleasant songs. And he longed for their return in the spring with “an eagerness and intensity of expectation.”

How many provisions nature has for keeping us simple-hearted and child-like! The Song Sparrow is one of them.

—C. C. Marble.

(All recording are from xeno-canto.org)


Lee’s Addition:

Beside them the birds of the heavens dwell; they sing among the branches. (Psalms 104:12 ESV)

He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the LORD. (Psalms 40:3 ESV)

Variety is the spice of life, or so they say. I agree. The Lord has given each species their own unique way of singing and making vocal sounds. They are as varied as we are. Some people can sing beautifully and some are like me who make more of a “joyful noise.”

It was a challenge to round up the recordings and select the ones I wanted. I trust you enjoy them as well as I do.

*

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

*

(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The Yellow Warbler

The Previous Article – To A Water-Fowl

Sharing The Gospel

Links:

xeno-canto.org