Fowl Confession

Remember how I hate birds? Well ... not only did I get a cardinal, I got a whole family of them.

I can recognize their weird squeak-chirps without ever laying eyes on them and I've researched what food they prefer (sunflower seeds and shells). At dinner time, the whole family sits quietly and waits for the squeak-chirp to come. Then we sit in awe of the skittish red bird gracing us with its presence. Unfortunately, I've yet to get a good photo of any of them. Just turning on my camera startles them.

With the cardinals have come chickadees, tufted titmice, nuthatches, and robins. And one other bird that I'd never really noticed until we discovered a complicated, dense nest in a bush next to our back deck. The bird protecting it was slightly different from the others -- it was a duller brown color and had wide, piercing eyes.

After much research, turns out this is a brown thrasher. A bird I'd never even heard of, but which is one of the more populous birds in our region. Known for fading into the background, the brown thrasher is sort of the middle child of birds. Perhaps that's why it has snagged a piece of our hearts. We check on the nest daily and have moved food closer to it.

Then yesterday we were fascinated to realize there are two birds. (Obviously we are totally clueless about bird culture because we assumed the mama was a single parent struggling all by her lonesome with her clutch of babies.) A mama and a daddy, tag teaming their speckled brown eggs, one coming as the other goes, both focused solely on these babies.

No wonder we feel so connected to them. I am on the lookout for brown thrashers now. I know they're out there, sitting back and giving the limelight to the flashy red cardinals, assertive blue jays, and adorable little chickadees. But they, like me (and every other middle child), deserve recognition and admiration for their contribution to the show.

And I am way too excited for those little babies to emerge from their shells and fill our tiny back yard world with their cries. Is it weird to feel like they're my babies, too? (You don't have to answer that.)


  • Bibliomama

    Ha, no kidding with the piercing eyes. (WTF? Why are you pointing that thing at me?!!!)

  • Kelly Miller

    I know. It totally looks psycho. One of the descriptions of it is "skulking." Ain't that the damn truth!

  • Jami

    I wish we were better at identifying our birds. There are so many in the woods. One uear we bought the boys binoculars, put the baby a backpack and set off to become birdwatchers. The kids were so loud I think we only ended up seeing like one or two birds...as they flew away.

  • The Drama Mama

    I caught a bird in the tree over my house. We have had a lot of blue jays this year. I'm loving it, but not the piles of bird poop on my car. Oh the joys of living in the woods!!

    During Jellybean's softball practice, sometimes I take Scooby to play on the playground equipment at the school. There is this one Little Tikes type of playset with a telescope. Do you know I found a birds nest with 3 little blue eggs in it in the telescope? That was pretty cool.

  • Cheri

    Guess this means you hate birds a little less now? Funny what a bit of education will do. We have had a pair of morning doves nesting in the gutter outside our bedroom window. Last October and back early April. But both times after about two weeks of patiently sitting on those eggs the birds disappeared and the eggs were nowhere to be found. We think the hawks are getting them.

  • liz

    I can't believe you were able to get so close to get those pictures!

  • Kelly Miller

    @Liz - not me! The birds are very mistrustful of me, but they let the Mountain Man get extremely close. What's *that* about?!

  • XmasDolly

    What a beautiful post! You out did yourself girlfriend! Come on, you don't really hate birds anymore do ya? Anyway, do stop at my blog. I have a few things for you.

  • Anonymous

    I'm going to share this post with my older son when he gets up from his nap. He loves all the birds in our backyard and is fascinated by the robins' nest outside the window of my office. (I don't think I've seen any thrashers around, although I do love the name!)

  • Kelly Miller

    Kristen, make sure you point out to him the links for each bird type. The site they link to has recordings of their songs. I recognized many of our birds by song, not sight. Very cool!

  • Heather

    I hope you get pictures when they hatch!

  • See Mom Smile

    We are plauged with ducks in our neighborhood. They lay their eggs in folks bushes and then we have dozens of little cute chicks waddling around for weeks. Yes they are cute but their poop is NOT!

  • Unknown

    My 15mo old points out every bird we see, and we have a lot.
    Visiting f/ the LBS social.

    Random Recycling

  • A Green Spell

    Hi!Thanks for stopping by my blog! Yours is lovely!

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear what you have to say! (If you want an emailed response, be sure to enable email in your Blogger settings -- see a tutorial here.)

Now. Spill it!