Talkin’ Bird Photography

The opening section of my last blog post contained the following: In this time of troubling polarization, (and in this time where too often, emotion trumps reason), what can unite us? Clemson Professor of Wildlife Ecology Dr. J. Drew Lanham offers an answer in his 2018 Year of the Bird piece, "The United State of … Continue reading Talkin’ Bird Photography

Birding Unites Us

These are the opening lines of an old Noel Paul Stookey/Michael Kelly Blanchard song: And in these days of confused situations And in these nights of a restless remorse When the heart and the soul of a nation Lay wounded and cold as a corpse I thought of those lines this morning. Then I got … Continue reading Birding Unites Us

Bird Love

This is a few days late, I know. Memorial Day 2020 has passed. But a time to be grateful never does. We remember those who fought and died for our country. We also recognize that the best way to thank them is to live lives worthy of their sacrifice. I'm reminded of  Thomas Aquinas's words—and … Continue reading Bird Love

Life and Beauty

I was taken with a recent Maryland Birding Facebook Group post—a post about a front-line Emergency Room nurse. Among her patients were those with COVID-19. One day while at work, she discovered an adult male Northern Cardinal lying on the ground just outside the ER. It had flown into a hospital window and was motionless, … Continue reading Life and Beauty

Birds Haven’t Changed

It's interesting, but one of the many coronavirus pandemic outcomes seems to be a renewed interest in nature. Just ask a Virginia birder who reports that trails she's always had to herself are now congested. Or ask a Maryland birder who finds her usual  "haunts" filled with too many people. There are many possible reasons for … Continue reading Birds Haven’t Changed

The One Constant

"There are 2 things I can't imagine being without: birds and music. OK, there might be a 3rd: potato chips." I jotted those words down in my journal a while back. It's fun and important to write things down. But what I wrote there doesn't reflect how I rank the things that matter. Religion, which … Continue reading The One Constant

Bird-Related Grace

Before I begin, please note that some of what follows might be a little obscure unless you're familiar with my previous 2 blog posts. It's funny, but as a writer, albeit a middling one, I feel something of an obligation to blog more often now, if it means providing my readers with a little more … Continue reading Bird-Related Grace

A Hopeful Time

This is a complicated time. But one thing that keeps many of us centered and hopeful is the birds in our lives. Beacons of Hope John W. Fitzpatrick, Director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, said as much in a recent message to members. He wrote that birds are "beacons of hope," and that "this … Continue reading A Hopeful Time

Common Birds

It was a year ago that I wrote: "Be Still and Know." And I still believe, but now even more so, that stillness is, as Mary Oliver put it, “one of the doors into the temple.” Gosh, I love those words. I'm a Mary Oliver fan from way back. The longer I bird and the … Continue reading Common Birds

A Few Words About Birds

A recent opinion piece in The Virginian-Pilot, Virginia's largest daily newspaper, began with the words: "First of all, thank you for reading." I'd like to begin, here, the same way. First of all, thank you for reading. I mean that, sincerely. "We've mentioned the passing of Caroll Spinney and our love for Big Bird, but … Continue reading A Few Words About Birds