Sunday, March 9, 2008


As a birder, I am familiar with the opportunities of wonder, inspiration and even awe that are being missed by people who scoff at the idea of birding. The serenity I get from watching Tundra Swans glide across backwater pools is irreplaceable. Seeing a line of ducks and their ducklings waddling across a lawn or a back country road is comical and heartwarming. I can't describe the comfort I feel as I lay abed and hear the honking of Canada Geese flying overhead on a cool autumn night, seeing but not seeing their "V" formation. Somehow this repeat of nature's rhythm gives me reassurance. Nor can I convey the thrill I experience when I finally isolate the gorgeous, subtle green and blue colors of an immature Purple Gallinule hidden among the reeds and marsh grasses of a swampy pond crowded with water lily pads and catkins.

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