“If you spend too much time in the woods you know, you can become a little squirrelly,” said dear friend #1, kindly, as we discussed the possible need for me to occasionally be in the society of humans.
“This is my dear friend, Margy, who photographs birds and butterflies, and always dresses in nature's colors so that she can blend in,” introduced by dear friend #2, effusively, on one of those rare occasions.
Yes, well, I’m probably more than a little squirrelly by now and yes, I always dress to become a part of the woods, to “make like a tree” so that the birds will ignore me and go on about their business. I have always figured that if the locals accept my presence, our sanctuary space will be that much more comfortable and inviting for the migrants who come through.
Now, with cold winter days upon us, birds like woodpeckers, nuthatches, chickadees and titmice will cache seeds away, just like squirrels do when they bury their treasured acorns. Here are a couple examples, a White-breasted Nuthatch is about to tuck a sunflower seed into the vine, and a Tufted Titmouse has a beak full to stash in a secret place.
A picture is worth a thousand words, they say. But there are times when there can be no picture,
only the story because the bird got
“up too close and personal”.
The Titmouse and "The Tree"
On Saturday, I was focusing on a bird at the Bubbler when I felt a fluttering wing brush my right hand. I slowly pulled back from the camera to see a Tufted Titmouse with a safflower seed in its beak clinging to my camera strap.
(Use your vivid imagination here, photo taken post-experience.)
Hmm, it was attempting to conceal the seed in a nook of my tripod. The little gray bird then looked up at me and oh-oh, it flew off. I chuckled and went back to watching for birds.
A few minutes later, the Titmouse was back. This time it perched on the cedar post that was maybe five feet in front of me.
The bird had another seed. It looked me right in the eye, flew straight to me and landed on my shoulder. I could feel its smooth little bill against my skin as it gently deposited the seed under my hat, at the back of my neck, into the collar of my sweater. It then hopped onto the brim of my hat and flew off.
The moment had finally come, I had become "The Tree", or at the very least, a completely accepted part of the landscape
by one trusting little bird!
"Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the Earth are never alone or weary of life."
For all the images taken since the last post, begin here: November Week 1