Open Thread - 05-27-22 - Little Bird

Back on 4-12-22 I posted a comment about a little Northern Parula that had been banging on our window. Well, it's now 5-27-22 and it's still here, banging on the same window every day, multiple times per day, incessantly. As a matter of fact the little bugger is banging on the window as I write this.

Here's a video I recorded on 5-12-22, one month after my initial post (1:03 - captured with my phone):

If you follow the link to the comment I included above, in the sub-thread dystopian makes this distinction: "They have a neat buzzy insect-like ascending trill for a song." He's exactly right, that's how they sound. I now know it very well.

Parulas nest in Spanish Moss. That's a Crepe Myrtle tree on the other side of the window. Not far on the other side of the Crepe Myrtle is a huge oak tree loaded with Spanish Moss. The Parula no doubt is nesting in the oak tree and flies down to the Crepe Myrtle to, oh I don't know, have some fun banging it's head on the window?

We first noticed the Parula in early April, here it is 44 days later and its is still trying to get into that window. I figure it has either a severe case of OCD, or a severe need to get away from a nest full of young ones.

Actually, my best guess is it is seeing another Parula in the window and wants to escort it away from its nest.

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While we're on the subject of birds. Have you ever heard the lonesome sound of a mockingbird singing in the night? It's a real thing. There's been one, probably a lovesick male, in our yard for at least a couple of weeks. It really is sad and sorrowful. Kind of reminds me of myself back in the day.

(Not my video. Filmed at night so no visual.)
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Bonus question: Have you ever wondered what was going through the head of the Easter Islander that cut down the last tree on the island?

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Have a great Memorial Day weekend, folks!
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Gotta' make this quick, headed to Fredricksburg/Luckenbach later this morning for a weekend of R&R. Going to Luckenbach Saturday. Live music in downtown Fredricksburg on Sunday.

Got to go pack now.

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Safe journey and I hope gas prices are user friendly!
I am surprised that Parula has a beak left.

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@on the cusp
in the seat next to me makes up for any downside. Biggrin

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@JtC Master Blog Owner Dude, you have a sweet streak!

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ggersh's picture

back in the burbs we also have birds banging at the window, only
that it's a sparrow of some sort. But on the good side, the garden
is full of Mourning Doves, Red-winged Blackbirds, Cowbirds with an
occaissional Woodie, Bluejay, Goldfinch and Cardinals.

All together it's quite the concert we have going on in the yard

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“Those who choose the lesser evil forget very quickly that they chose evil.”
— Hannah Arendt

@ggersh
watch out for those cowbirds, they're nasty. They lay their eggs in song bird's nest, destroy the songbird's eggs, and let the songbird raise their fledglings.

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dystopian's picture

Hi all, Hey JtC! Awesome sauce bro! Very cool. I want to give you an A+ on your bird report. Wink

I can't believe it is still doing it. But have had Cardinal, and Towhee do it for extended periods. Birds will do this with car mirrors as well, and a nice chrome hubcap will even serve. Anything reflective can do it.

I suspect your pair is nesting a second time. For most songbirds, nesting cycle is about a month. Egg laying to hatching a couple weeks, and hatching to fledging a couple more weeks. I have on multiple occasions had Northern Parula nesting events in which the birds came in, nested, and left, within 6 weeks. If food conditions are good enough many songbirds will do three cycles in a single breeding season.

Parulas are warblers in case folks are interested. More properly wood-warblers, but hardly anyone calls them that unless in a technical setting. Warblers are many peoples' favorite group of birds. Over 50 types in the U.S., so outstanding diversity and the various colors are amazing. Fast action, most with long migrations to the tropics for the winter, a fascinating group of birds. For most across the pond, the group of birds they want to see most in America, is warblers.

Warblers provide a great example of layering. The separation of micro-biomes within an ecosystem so they are not competing. Some warblers are ground-warblers. Others live entirely in short bushes, the understory. A few are bark specialists which only use the trunks and big branches, hunting the bark. Others are mid-level tree foragers, and still others are strictly tree-top or tip-of-branch foragers. So you can have six species making a living in the same trees, almost not whatsoever overlapping each other when it comes to tapping food resources. Layering.

Those all-nighter Mockers take a lot of heat here in Texas for those nocturnal serenades. Yup, overwhelming majority if not all, are unmated males. They troll with song from area to area hoping a female is somewhere that likes the cut of their jib. Yellow-breasted Chat also sings a lot at night,
and since no one knows what they are, the Mockingbird is blamed and takes the heat. LOL.

I listen to ID the birds the Mocker is imitating to guess where he has been. I have run out in the front yard many times to see rare bird I hear, to find a Mocker. But once one was imitating a Great Kiskadee in the yard, and a Great Kiskadee flew into the yard!

Thanks for the bird news!

Have a great weekend all!

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

@dystopian
thank you for your expert information, I'm glad you chimed in.

I knew it was a mockingbird singing in the night, but I didn't know why until I researched it. Gotta' feel a little sorry for the poor little guy missing out on a date.

Glad you guys got some rain last week.

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enhydra lutris's picture

Most likely your Parula sees a reflection of the foliage it's in and launching from and intends to explore it, that's pretty common. We get a lot of window collisions, the really loud ones are when the local sharpie chases a mourning dove into the reflection of the apricot tree in the dining room window.

Just another average day here, which is fine with us, a great improvement over the past 10 months, Gonna make a fresh peach slab pie and then see if I can organize some of the accumulated piles of stuff and paperwork.

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@enhydra lutris
I hadn't thought of the foliage reflection, but it makes sense.

Back in Illinois I remember birds chasing each other and slamming into a window. Had one knock itself out, I thought it was dead, several minutes later it woke up, hung around all dazed and confused for a few more minutes and then flew off.

Damn, thinking of that pie makes me hungry.

Have a good one.

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a c99 meetup here in Texas, maybe this fall. Luckenbach would be perfect. Any Texans, or anyone else for that matter, interested?

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@JtC My hand is raised really high!

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@JtC Count me in! I am very close to Fredericksburg and Luckenbach. Enjoy your weekend there.

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Life is what you make it, so make it something worthwhile.

This ain't no dress rehearsal!

@JtC
It’s so far away (from New England) I almost never fly, and my s.o. hates really long drives.
Please put me on the list anyway, just in case….. it’s really tempting.

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“We have a very small window in which we need to make a fundamental shift away from capitalism.” Kshama Sawant

I'll catch up later this afternoon or early evening.

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explanation for your bird's behavior, please keep in mind that birds are considered by some to be the “Uber drivers” for spirit world visitations.

My adult daughter had a Cardinal clinging to the screen several years ago, following her from room to room through her house, persistently for several days. It was such a strange behavior that she mentioned it in a phone call home. My wife made a connection to her recently departed mother who loved birds, particularly Cardinals. Long story short, my daughter turned out to be simultaneously hosting two separate cancers, without any symptoms at the time. As soon as she later found a swollen lymph node, she thought of the Cardinal and her grandmother, who had died of cancer herself.

Two doctors told her it was “not lymphoma”, one was department head of oncology in a major teaching hospital. She is alive today, 8 years later!, because she “knew” grandma was trying to warn her about something and she persisted until the correct diagnosis and treatment of both cancers was accomplished.

The world is a strange and mysterious place. In our family, we are all thankful for that little Cardinal, who we believe played an important part in saving our daughter, just in the nick of time!

Sometimes a bird is just a bird, but sometimes it’s a bird and a messenger.

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“We have a very small window in which we need to make a fundamental shift away from capitalism.” Kshama Sawant

QMS's picture

@ovals49

if only we can learn to hear what they are saying.
One of my favorite communications with the birds
is to mimic their whistles, wait for a reply, and see
where the conversation goes. Clever little critters.

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dystopian's picture

@ovals49 In the Teachings of Don Juan, about the Yaqui brujo, (by Carlos Castaneda) they were quite tuned in to messages from shall we call them non-standard sources. Like say a lizard. In particular one quite important was the shiny silver sheen of reflection one can get off of a Raven when they go from black to bright shining star momentarily as they, the sun, and you are all at just the proper angle so as to create that sparking glint of light, out of black. It was a very important re-affirmation of what you were thinking when you saw that. And that we should watch for these signs.

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

@dystopian
lying naked on a mattress on a hot VT summer evening, when a bat flew through my open loft window and started dive bombing my head. I was just reading the section when Carlos, on his Ally search on a hilltop, freaked out and ran down the hill with something pursuing him! Every hair on my body was standing straight up.

I frantically waved my t shirt around, but he kept going for my head. In a moment of panic and inspiration I turned on my bedside radio, between stations, at full volume static. He did a few tight circles over the bed and booked it out the window. I rushed over to latch the window closed. By the time I got back on the mattress he started banging, repeatedly, on the closed window.

This was about the most freaked out I had ever been, more intense and personal than any of my acid adventures. I have no Idea what the message was, I just wanted it to stop!

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“We have a very small window in which we need to make a fundamental shift away from capitalism.” Kshama Sawant

dystopian's picture

@ovals49 what a great story! Thanks for that! Bats are big rabies carriers, so if one is being agressive, which is quite unlike them, it could be a bad sign. More likely though it was a place it went to hang out. Or, it was going after the mosquitoes that were attracted to your CO2. I have known bat people, that use a ball cap and a golf glove to snag them out of the air. Don Juan was talking to ya! Wink

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

janis b's picture

@ovals49
@dystopian

Thank you both.

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dystopian's picture

I don't know why this song is so cool to me, probably its weirdness... very creative. I hadn't had enough coffee when I stopped by early, and forgot about this until later... Sounds like someone has a finger on the tape reel...

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

snoopydawg's picture

@dystopian

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It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

Pluto's Republic's picture

...for the summer. You can still see the view, and it will keep the house cooler. Even the birds develop PTSD, poor things.

I believe in buffering and augmenting nature. It's cruel enough as it is.

And speaking of buffering — y'all wear masks outside where crowds gather. Theres a huge surge of between 100,000 and 800,000 new cases per day out there, causing permanent organ damage about 50 percent of the time. According to epidemiologists at Johns Hopkins, this fall is likely to bring the biggest wave that the US has experienced so far.

Unless, that is, wearing a mask in Texas poses a bigger threat to your lives.

Hugs.

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire

janis b's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Fine black mosquito netting is basically invisible to me when looking out, and I can imagine it would also work the other way, obscuring a bird's view of nature's reflection in the window, therefore saving the life of some birds.

On the other hand, as others experiences point out, it may also prevent some significant messages from being passed. Life is a compromise ; ).

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enhydra lutris's picture

@janis b

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

janis b's picture

@enhydra lutris

especially I guess when you are trying to photograph birds without going outside and disturbing them.

As far as deterrents to birds crashing into windows where they see their surroundings reflected, I have found that hanging something that twirls in front of the window is effective. Hanging CDs are not a bad option because they spin easily even in the slightest breeze and when the sun hits it, it sends flashes of light around inside. In one window I have a clear spiral thing hanging that does the trick and is enjoyable to watch spinning.

Be well el

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enhydra lutris's picture

@Pluto's Republic

falcons. They work most of the time.

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

yellopig's picture

I call it the car-alarm bird. It’s like those alarms that play 8 different alerts in rotation. Actually, the bird has more different alerts & can also vary the pitch and speed of each one. It’s pretty awesome.

One night, it parked itself right at my front door & sang from midnight until 3 am. Ok, that wasn’t quite so awesome, but I’ll take that over the neighbor’s yappy dog any time.

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“We may not be able to change the system, but we can make the system irrelevant in our lives and in the lives of those around us.”—John Beckett