“Here you go, Mr. and Mrs. Robin!” she called to the birds. “Here is a nest supply shop just for you!”
from: Amelia Bedelia is for the Birds
by Herman Parish
illustrated by Lynne Avril
Greenwillow Books/ HarperCollins, 2015
Yesterday was the first day of Spring. It felt like Spring to me. The sky was a little bit lighter gray. The air was not freezing cold. The grass was not quite as brown.
Sticks are scattered all over the yard. Squirrels are scampering.
And that robin I saw last week survived. Cheerful chirrups greet me when I bring in the morning newspaper.
A long time ago my brother-in-law told me many robins don’t migrate. And it’s true. They spend most of their time in trees, though, so we don’t see them. They eat fruit and berries. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Robin/lifehistory
Spring and Summer, robins love to eat earthworms. An adult can eat 68 worms every day. Youngsters eat about 50, gathered for them by the adults. Each clutch includes 3-5 eggs. That’s a lot of worms!. (National Wildlife Federation’s World of Birds: A Beginner’s Guide. Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, 2014.) Seeing robins in your yard is a good sign of a healthy lawn. Worms aerate the soil.
Birds are fascinating: their colors, their songs, their ability to fly. I was a quiet child. I liked sitting outside listening to the birds. It might have been at Girl Scout Camp where I learned each type of bird has its own song. I remember a few common ones. I like to try to locate the birds I hear when I’m sitting on my porch or taking a walk. Here’s an easy way to listen to some common backyard birds. http://birdlanguage.com/resources/bird-voices-audio-library/species-list/ and https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/browse.aspx?name=a Two of my cats really love these sites.
Although now I know he was teasing, my grandpa told me if I put salt on its tail, I could catch a bird. I didn’t really want to catch a bird. What would I do with it? The idea seemed intriguing, though, and I spent plenty of warm summer hours chasing squirrels with a few grains of salt in my pocket. I never caught one, but it was not for lack of trying.
Today promises partial sun and warmish weather. I’ll go outside with empty pockets and listen for birds while I pick up all those scattered sticks.
In case you are still wondering about the Monopoly vote:
The boot, wheelbarrow, and thimble have ALL been swapped from the iconic game, for a Tyrannosaurus rex, rubber ducky, and penguin.
According to: http://www.vox.com/culture/2017/3/17/14959012/monopoly-3-new-tokens-anti-capitalism-hasbro-elizabeth-magie
The T. rex stands for the inherent predatory nature of capitalism.
The penguin stands for the coldness of Wall Street, and also for the profit-driven destruction of the polar ice caps.
The rubber ducky seems to say, “Much like water off of this duck, the inhumanity and decadence of late capitalism just rolls off my back.”
See pictures of the new tokens (along with the remaining originals) here: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/monopoly-unveils-new-game-pieces/