The tree grew, and was strong, and the height thereof reached unto heaven, and the sight thereof to the end of all the earth. The leaves thereof were fair, and the fruit thereof much, and in it was meat for all: the beasts of the field had shadow under it, and the fowls of the heaven dwelt in the boughs thereof, and all flesh was fed of it. (Daniel 4:11-12)
Birds love trees!
Trees provide suitable platforms for nests. Sometimes trees serve as substrates for crawling bugs that are eaten by attentive birds. Trees provide shelter form boisterous winds or excessively hot sunlight. Trees often provide fruits or nuts that birds eat. Trees can provide protective cover to birds who hide in their branch-supported foliage. Trees provide perching sites, for resting or for monitoring the neighborhood for predator or prey. Among other uses, trees are made to birds!
One perky illustration of these forest ecology facts is the Carolina Chickadee (Poecile carolinensis).
On Thursday, March 22nd (AD2018) I saw a “lifer” — a Carolina Chickadee perched upon a branch of a pine tree, in the Thomas, Louisiana (in the Franklinton/Pine area), not too many miles south of Brookhaven, Mississippi (home of some of the best Cajun/Creole cuisine I’ve ever eaten – at “Mardi Gras Gril”, a family-owned-and-operated restaurant). The Carolina Chickadee looks a lot like it northern cousin, the beige-accented Black-capped Chickadee; however, the Carolina Chickadee has no beige plumage – its feathers are a patchwork of black, grey, and white.
So here is my limerick about seeing the chickadee in the pine tree.
VIEWING A CAROLINA CHICKADEE IN LOUISIANA
Behold! The Carolina Chickadee —
Was perched within a pine tree;
‘Twas ready, to grab, bugs to eat,
For insects, in air, was its meat —
Behold! The Carolina Chickadee!
(Also, that day, I observed Eastern Bluebird, Barn Swallow, Swamp Sparrow, Mockingbird, Black Vulture, White Egret, Brown Thrasher, and more — and heard a Mourning Dove’s mournful cooing.)
Louisiana is not just a “Sportsman’s Paradise”, it is a near-paradise for birdwatching (and catching frogs!) — but, if you are in or near in blackwater swamps, watch out for snakes and alligators! (Meanwhile, expect to have some good Cajun cuisine!)