Bird Lessons

April 20, 2009

In addition to butterflies, we have been busy spotting birds. Spring in Florida means lots of nests, hatchlings, and mama birds. In the past two weeks we have spotted Anhinga, Osprey, Great Blue Heron, Little Blue Heron, Snowy Egret, Great Egret, Roseate Spoonbill, Muscovy Ducks, Mallards, Canadian Geese. We have seen them on our drives, our walks, at local parks, and during a recent visit to a rookery. We have seen vultures mating (not a pretty sight, but led to some good discussion about the birds and the bees). We have seen gators lounging on the ground under trees filled with nests. The gators keep raccoons from getting into the nests, but the gators are also waiting for those moments when little birds are learning to fly. We have discovered them in busy parking lots. Mama ducks weaving through cars with their babies. Mama ducks sitting on eggs under bushes between parked cars. People leaving nearby restaurants feed the ducks and so the ducks stick around even when it's not a safe location. And in that same parking lot we saw a crow attempt to fly away with a newly hatched duckling. We scared him off and had another interesting discussion about the scary things in life. Lots to learn from birds.

April is Child and Nature Month. Seems like recently there has been a surge in books and websites focused on children and nature. Even new words like nature deficient disorder . Seems so strange and sad that there is even a need for diagnosis and a formal campaign to encourage outdoor exploration. Some of my favorite memories from childhood involved running free in the fields and endless hours of building outdoor houses/structures with collected items. I don't need a book or website to tell me that there is joy, discovery, and multiple life lessons waiting outside our door. Which is why it makes me so sad that this isn't currently a part of every child's life. Imagine Childhood and The Magnifying Glass are two blogs which highlight the joys of natural exploration. Check them out, then turn off your computer and head outside to see what is hatching in your neck of the woods.
Nessie Noodle said...

yes, it is so sad that people don't even know what they are missing outside isn't?

I have vivid memories of getting so muddy it was ridicouls and wandering around discovering the world around me. I can't imagine not giving MrO the same thing too.

morninglight mama said...


craftymama said...

i am so loving birds right now! we have a feeder outside our kitchen window and i love it. it has made me appreciate all the birds around when i'm out and about too.

Dawn said...

You know we are all about the birds around here.. but we don't have nearly the action you guys are seeing! That is just too fun!
NDD is a new one for me... I can't even imagine a life without the outdoors!

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