birds

:Tag: birds

Rafts of Dreaming Birds

Originally published at The Wild Beat in 2013 I stepped out of a mist and I knew I am. I am what I am. And then I thought, 'But what have I been before?' And then I found that I had been in a mist, not knowing to differentiate myself from things; I was just one thing among many things." ~ Carl Jung, The Red Book I used to think about Jung and bird [...]

2019-01-30T21:27:35+00:00February 14th, 2018|@Popular Posts, Blog|5 Comments

Raging Sea of Cormorants

I saw this group of cormorants off the coast of Oregon, framed by the tumult of the Pacific. It struck me how nonchalant their poses were as they preened their plumage in the midst of raging sea. Where we might crumble under the power of these swells, the pelagic beings thrive here, in a sheen of feathered wet suits. We're tiny beings, really -- we humans who claim dominion. We're specks on a loom, where the feathered ones weave their patterns on waves ... and fling themselves [...]

2019-02-01T00:42:09+00:00August 4th, 2014|Blog|5 Comments

Spa Day for a Night Heron

... at Lake Merritt in Oakland, California I originally named this portrait "Standing Room Only." I'd never seen a Black-crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax) creep chest-high into a pool -- then just stand there forever like a Japanese snow monkey. This pose made me laugh as I watched the heron soak up the swirls of his own private day spa. One of my Facebook friends wrote, "what is this lil man doing?" That comment captured [...]

2019-02-01T01:09:57+00:00March 5th, 2014|@Popular Posts, Blog|13 Comments

Western Gull + Fishing Line + Rehab

Note: I use male/female pronouns for wild animals even when I can't discern the sex. I don't like to depersonalize a living being as an "it." In this case, I did not know the sex of this gull.In my previous post, I mentioned a Western Gull I managed to rescue ... by true luck. Here's that story.We were in Los Angeles all of January and part of February, and in the context of a chaotic [...]

2019-02-01T01:21:37+00:00February 22nd, 2014|Blog|11 Comments

The White and the Blue [Birds]

First there was Blue. She came to us from the great blue, the wild blue, as blue as Lightin' Slim, singing pigeon blues, not Rooster Blues. She came on banded foot, born of two other Blues who gave our Blue her azul feathers and fuchsia feet ... in a lineage that swept back through the blueness of her grandparents and past the great grandparents before them. They all commanded the skies and taught Blue, [...]

2019-02-01T01:27:05+00:00November 20th, 2013|@Popular Posts, Blog|23 Comments

Welcome Home, Seattle Ducks!

I spotted my first migratory ducks on the urban shores of Elliott Bay last week. The new arrivals are on edge -- wary and easy to flush. Lifting my lens is enough to send them skittering to the middle of the bay, and I can only imagine what sights and sounds have jarred them into high alert on their long journey home. I think of how far the winter ducks soar, finally dipping into [...]

2019-02-01T01:56:38+00:00November 15th, 2013|Blog|0 Comments

The Legend of the White Gallopavo

The color white represents catharsis in alchemy. It's the point at which a blackened substance, through heat and reactivity, develops a white crust and then puffs into a cloud inside the alchemist's flask. It's the stage at which future possibilities become apparent as a material is transformed from one to the other. And it's symbolized by a white swan or white eagle. In Arthurian tales, it was believed the elusive white hart (or stag) [...]

2019-02-01T02:00:02+00:00October 21st, 2013|Blog|10 Comments

Gull Chicks and Gateway Birds

"When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it's your world for the moment. I want to give that world to someone else. Most people in the city rush around so, they have no time to look at a flower. I want them to see it whether they want to or not."~ Artist Georgia O'Keeffe Gulls are among the birds I call "gateway birds." They're common and accessible. They [...]

2019-02-01T02:37:15+00:00August 1st, 2013|@Popular Posts, Blog|22 Comments

Clever, Corrugated Starlings

With starlings, I am often an outlier, even among people who share my conservation ethics and love for wildlife. That's because I appreciate starlings in a way that defies conventional dislike for the species in the United States. I wrote about this in a 2009 post about European Starlings and their introduction to the U.S. in the late 19th century: "Starlings are related to Mynahs, both in the family Sturnidae. They’re exceptional mimics. In [...]

2019-02-01T05:57:50+00:00June 20th, 2013|Blog|23 Comments

Sleeping With the Fishes

This isn't the first time I've seen an Osprey napping with a fish in his talons. Last year, while observing the platform way across Seattle's long-abused-but-recovering Duwamish River I watched a male Osprey land on a utility pole, clutching a half-eaten meal. A crow who'd been tailing the Osprey, landed alongside. The Osprey perched, adjusted -- then appeared to doze off. The crow who'd been haranguing him for some leftovers seemed to be in [...]

2019-02-01T06:05:23+00:00June 16th, 2013|Blog|5 Comments

A Pelagic Housewarming Gift

I should stop making excuses for shooting in damp, dark conditions. It is, after all, the Pacific Northwest. But, well ... I was shooting in damp, dark conditions, standing on the car deck of a Washington State Ferry at Anacortes, in an ISO 5000 drizzle. Hugh -- who's become a better bird spotter than I am -- pointed to the air traffic around the nearby terminal pilings. It was Pelagic Cormorant mania -- a [...]

2019-02-01T06:17:02+00:00June 9th, 2013|Blog|3 Comments

Great Blue Resilience

A few weeks ago, I walked by the Great Blue Heron rookery a short distance from our place. I expected to see the six or eight heron couples, draped over their nests in anticipation of egg hatching ... or maybe even the first raspy calls of young chicks rustling in the alders. Instead, this is who came my way. Heron + Branch - ©ingridtaylar And then another Great Blue, bearing the sign [...]

2019-01-30T21:35:26+00:00June 6th, 2013|Blog|12 Comments

Identifying Bird Songs

I helped a fellow volunteer with a class presentation this month -- on the topic of birding by ear. I was asked to help, not because I can, in fact, identify birds by ear. But because I'm reasonably adept at editing sound files and attaching them to Powerpoint slides. I can't post any of my friend's audio files without violating copyright, but I can definitely recommend a few sources for bird songs if you're [...]

2019-01-31T12:45:10+00:00December 17th, 2008|Blog|0 Comments