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Sora

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Sora

On Saturday, I went walking in Bonelli Regional Park with my neighbor Michelle. When we were by the reeds along the edge of Puddingstone Reservoir, I spotted a lone Sora hunting in the waters — her white tail bobbing behind her! There were many other birds to see there, too, of course, including the ubiquitous red-winged blackbirds, American coots, white-crowned sparrows, purple finches, hummingbirds, Canadian geese, mallard ducks, black phoebes, and the always-beautiful Great White Egrets.

 

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Birdwatching in Bonelli Regional Park

O the joy of birdwatching at Bonelli Regional Park! On the very first morning that I woke up in La Verne, which was the day after the solar eclipse, I saw a black-crowned night heron (very special), muscovy ducks, and Indian runner ducks (three first-time IDs for me) as well as several American coots, Canadian geese, mallard ducks, killdeer, starlings, brown-headed cowbirds, swallows, and a snowy egret that came gliding across the lake through the mist like an angel from another world. Beautiful!

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with my friend, Gemma de Luna,
visiting from Chicago

“The Hummingbird and the Pine Tree” by Kira Jane Buxton

The Hummingbird and the Pine Tree

New York Times
April 14, 2017

by Kira Jane Buxton

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Image by Giselle Potter

UNCAGED by Jane Beal

THE POETRY PLACE

My new collection of poems
about birding and the spiritual life:

BEAL-Uncaged-BkCvr

UNCAGED
hard-copy * read online

WHAT NEVER FAILS

We went to the water
to see the Pelican –

the one, they say, who stabs her breast
and feeds her young with blood (like Christ),

but there was no bird like that
on the little islands by the pier.

There were Western Gulls instead,
crying out like Alcyone for Ceys,

flying over us like the ragged mists
of dreams we dream at dawn

and, waking, find
have told us the truth.

We were standing close together, just above
the water, like the Light Princess and her Prince,

when I noticed the cliff swallows
darting over the waves, under the pier

where they have hidden their nests
and are feeding the future

with a constant love
that never fails.

jb

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Hooded Orioles

Today I was walking on the Biola University campus when I heard a racket in a nearby palm tree. I looked up, and lo and behold!, four aggravated hooded orioles were swooping around an errant squirrel who had made his way too close (I suspect) to a nest. In the midst of the racket, a surprised hummingbird came darting out from the palm branches, hovered in mid-air a few feet away from the tree, and then vanished!

According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, All About Birds, “Hooded Orioles in California earned the nickname ‘palm-leaf oriole’ because of their tendency to build nests in palm trees. When the nest is suspended from palm leaves, the female pokes holes in the leaf from below and pushes the fibers through, effectively sewing the nest to the leaf.” It’s a beautiful, delicate thing, and I can see why the orioles wouldn’t want a squirrel to come near their artwork — not to mention their little ones.

p.s. See two flirting orioles!

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Another Manuscript Page Full of Birds!

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A Manuscript Page Full of Birds

Cecco d'Ascoli - Acerba (14th c.)

Read the Acerba
(in Italian)