Over the last few years I’ve become a very amateur birdwatcher. I look at birds everywhere I go. I take pictures of them and try to figure out what they are. I have a bird feeder by the patio and one outside my kitchen window. I love to watch the cardinals, chickadees, sparrows, and the occasional wren visit the feeder. I love the indigo buntings that have made an appearance the last two years, and I especially love the red-shouldered hawks I see several times a week on the wires up and down my rural street.
I’m not sure what it is I like about birds. I’ve never wanted one as a pet. I just like to look at them. Maybe it’s because they can fly and I’d love to be able to fly. I flew in my dreams often when I was a kid. I wonder where those dreams went. I don’t have them anymore, but I remember the feeling of freedom I had. I imagine what it would be like to soar on the breeze, catching the updrafts. Some birds seem to fly for the sheer joy of it – I love that.
Today I saw a killdeer in the Target parking lot (school supply sales are starting, you know). This is the bird that will pretend to have a broken wing to lead predators away from its nest. Killdeers nest on the ground, so I guess it’s no wonder they need a strategy to keep their little ones safe. I always have a camera in my purse for just such sightings. Isn’t that a pretty bird?