Monday, March 2, 2009

A Bird in the Hand

Quite often, when we go out birding, we are trying to find some particular bird that has been posted as being at a particular place. It is not unusual for bird lovers to travel great distances in order to get a glimpse of some uncommon visitor.

I found that sometimes we put too much energy into finding these birds, that when we don't get to see them, we also don't get to see too much else. Case in point: when my husband and I traveled for several hours to see a Varied Thrush, which was gone by the time we reached the feeder. We also didn't get a glimpse of the White-winged Crossbills or the Pine Siskins that were there, as well.

Whenever we do go someplace looking for that special bird, and I have just decide to focus on the birds around me, I found that I usually got to see something just as rewarding.

We had gone back to Riverwood Park in the hope of seeing the Pileated Woodpecker pair that was reported there. Well, we didn't happen to see them. However, we were fortunate enough to see a pair of Coopers Hawk close to the nest. We stayed with them, and they seem to want to indulge us in this. When we had moved on, in search of the woodpeckers, the female hawk flew over to where we were, and just sat there looking at us. It was a pretty awesome experience. I think that if we were to ignore the hawks, and had just try to find the woodpeckers, we would have ended with some pretty long faces.

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