In the winter, I don't think much about birds
because I don't really see any.
But after the recent blizzard, my cousin Kathy
told me she braved the weather to fill her bird feeders.
It reminded me of my dad who always had
a bird feeder outside the window by his
He sat and stared and leafed through a bird manual
learning the names of all the colorful birds that landed there.
He also battled a perpetual war with the squirrels
who outwitted Dad's many
contraptions he built to keep them out of the bird feeder.
My brother-in-law Joe was surly about a squirrel
feeding his face on his own bird feeder that perched atop a
pole outside his kitchen window.
He opened the window, grabbed the squirrel's tail and
flipped the animal to the ground.
The squirrel scurried off, but
Joe was stunned that the varmint's tail was still in his hand!!!
It had snapped off and
to add to the horror, Stumpy stuck around the yard
for a year after.
Whenever Joe saw the tail-less squirrel
he felt bad.
Anyway, I started thinking about the birds that
brave Michigan winters and wanted to see some.
I remembered doing a news story years ago about
The Bay City State Nature Center.
They stock an array of bird feeders,
so I headed there today hoping to take some
pictures of beautiful birds.
Sure enough...the feeders were popular!
No other food available unless feathered flocks have a snow shovel.
The first colorful bird I saw was this blue jay.
I was shaking with excitement.
When a gorgeous red cardinal landed, my heart leaped.
Even the little black and white guys were adorable.
But photographing the birds was a real
fowl feat. They fluttered about from
feeder to feeder, barely staying long enough
for me to focus.
I was afraid to move and scare them away.
Then I saw THIS through my camera lens!!!!
Holy Moly!!! Is that an OWL???
Well, it was kind of hard to see it through the tiny
I was so afraid to move and scare him,
so slowly, I peered over the camera
and realized it was some kind of hawk.
You can see how big it was on this bird feeder.
The kind folks working at the Nature Center
were excited, too!
They had not seen such a big bird at the feeders
this year. They looked through books and
brought out stuffed hawks trying to
identify it against my photos.
Anybody know what kind of hawk this is???
I had to shoot these cardinal pictures through tears
because I was so awed at seeing these
colorful creatures and remembering them
at my dad's feeder.
If I come back to the earth as a bird,
I want to be a red cardinal!
(Well, maybe a pink flamingo because
I like PINK and I want long, slender legs.)
I was so delighted to capture this
cardinal as it took flight.
OMG!!! Birds are nature's miracles!!!
I'm so happy some birds
DON'T fly south for the winter!
They sure gave me a smile today.
I was at the Nature Center
for TWO hours.
I think the Nature people were
wondering if I would ever stop
oohing and ahhing
and snapping pictures...
I couldn't stop!!!!
Another in flight shot and fun with color editing.
Even though my dad has been gone for seven years,
I felt he was with me today.
Especially when I saw these guys...
They made me smile, too...