Some bird talk

For me the Tui is the most entertaining of the birds I see almost daily, with slight seasonal changes.

They are expert acrobats and jet-like flyers. They have the most resonant voices and like to talk and sing. They are honeyeaters with a beautiful iridescent coat of feathers. Mostly I see them in silhouette, when their body appears black with a fluffy white tuft under its neck. What looks like one round piece of white tuft divides into two halves that move in unison when they talk.


http://www.wayfarerimages.co.nz/shop/en/love-our-birds/512-tui-duet-card...

You can listen here to the Tui (and another familiar bird).

While writing this reverence to the Tui I found this poetic description, and more …

Tui
Iridescent shadows that zoom, bustle and warble through the canopy—tui have adapted and thrived while others have perished ...

For many of us, tui song is embedded in our psyche, functioning as a sort of aural anchor to home and tugging at our sense of what is peaceful and good. Somehow, the song is like a sonic portrait of Aotearoa, capturing something of the shattering clarity of light, of the wetness and cyclic mutterings of the New Zealand bush, a forest of bounty and grandeur before humans came to dominate ...

These glimpses of midnight blue, sometimes emerald, occasionally olive-gold feathers and those frivolous neck tufts further our feelings of intrigue towards them. Lending comic value to an otherwise dignified bird, the mutton-chop filaments that curve around the sides and back of the neck give tui a slightly harried look close up, to counter the impression of impeccable smoothness they have from a greater distance. Usually hidden singers, the moments when we see a tui in its gloss and paua iridescence are special enough to make us stop and stand still, conscious that we are witnesses to a kind of natural grace, undeserved and uncontrollable.
https://www.nzgeo.com/stories/tui/

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snoopydawg's picture

I’m still noticing the absence of birds here. Saw a few while camping in the mornings only, but nothing like I used to. And I’ve found a way to easily identify birds.

06B28BEF-2895-4F68-B0BD-FF6C96CCD905.jpeg

I can’t argue with this:

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In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

janis b's picture

@snoopydawg

the bird population had definitely suffered. I like your bird guide, it makes identification easy.

Luckily dogs have humans to live with.

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snoopydawg's picture

@janis b

Luckily humans have dawgs to live with too.

Yep this bird guide has been very helpful when I see one that I don’t know what it is. I used to hear meadowlarks when I was a kid. I haven’t heard one in decades. I wonder what other birds are missing now? Just heartbreaking.

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6 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

janis b's picture

@snoopydawg

"Luckily humans have dawgs to live with too."

What a wonderful relationship.

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snoopydawg's picture

@janis b

The other day I washed them and put them in front of the heat vent and when she went to get them they weren’t there..so she rummaged around and brought me a balloon, then a bag I had in the closet, then a different one and I finally figured out where they were. She tried…

I don’t do mornings, but always start my day with a smile and laugh. Boy I missed her the last 2 days. No morning laughing. Sorry for derailing your essay.

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5 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

janis b's picture

@snoopydawg

It sounds like she’s getting and giving the best care possible. Once she’s recovered she’ll have super immunity. Reading about parvo was also interesting in the context of current viral events.

She’ll need some extra shoes/toys to pass the quarantine time with.

Cheers you two.

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Lookout's picture

I wasn't familiar with the Tui.

We love to watch the birds, and like SD have noticed fewer and fewer. I think it the canary in the mine story. Wish we would take note and pay attention.

https://www.birds.cornell.edu/home/bring-birds-back
3 min

Enjoy your tui while you can!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

janis b's picture

@Lookout

An endeavour well worth supporting.

It's been 10 years now since I walked along a trail beside a stream in the PNW. It was very different than 10 years earlier. I was shocked by the bird silence.

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dystopian's picture

Very cool bird Janis. Great look, great sounds, whats not to love? Neat that a bird is so embedded in the culture there. We have the Bald Eagle, which is a theif when it can get away with it. So American. Nice to see some here have noticed a drop in birds. Many to most haven't noticed yet. Imagine what the general population knows of salamander, or reptile declines. Off the radar. Some places have it worse than others, but overall the avian decline (as insects) has been tremendous here in the U.S. in my lifetime. As a child in the 1960's reading accounts of scientists in the early 1900's I could not believe all the birds they saw. Today's birders feel that way about how it was when I was a kid. Sure some things are fine, gulls, grackles, Collared-Dove, Starling, man-adaptable species. In general I would say much is in freefall collapse. So, I suggest seeing and appreciating what we have while we have it. Thanks for spreading bird word. 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

@dystopian

What will it take to rewire our radar?

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dystopian's picture

@janis b sorry to be soooo slow getting back to this... I am not sure there is time to fix it. The momentum combined with the velocity which seems to be going exponential. Everything we are doing has to stop now, and all hands on deck fixing the problems. The problems are obvious: affluenza and consumaholism, an insatiable thirst for little green pieces of paper, toys, status and power, in a world where much of what is revered is a man-made phony illusion supported by daily doses of propaganda. We only save or protect what we love, and can only love what we know. Most don't know nature. Most people only know TV, movies, the propaganda they call news, and whatever all the cool hip pop scene offers in dumb music and fads. The masses are into fireworks, sports, and fake patriotism. Hardly enlightened. Which is what the moment requires. Considering most think either Hillary or Trump were the answer, I do not know how the changes and policies required can be enacted.

sorry to be buzzkill... Smile

So neat you get to see those Tui every day... awesome. Knowing a species intimately is next level, past just knowing its identity. Only lots of intimate time can do that. The biology of the animals is what is most amazing.

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1 user has voted.

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

@dystopian

all of it, but especially, “we only save or protect what we love, and can only love what we know.”

I’ve always thought you were as good as google, but I guess you’re not always as fast. ; ). Anytime is a good time to read your responses.

ps. I think of the Tui as the parent or grandparent of the communal bird family. They are very protective of their environment. They are the last ones you hear in the evening when all others are nestled for the night, as if to quietly comfort everyone that all is well and safe. They are also the first to wake the bush in the morning with song.

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enhydra lutris's picture

Cool bird. I also liked the wax eye's, their behavior reminds me of bushtits.

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

I'm glad you also enjoyed the waxeye. There are only two birds here that vie for smaller than the waxeye.

Grey Warbler

Rifleman

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