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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Feathered friends

One of my favorite entertainments is watching and listening to birds. I enjoy the birds at home in Louisville.  Given the weather extremes during much of the year, that means watching them through kitchen windows while they play in the birdbath or poke around in the yard. Few days in Louisville are neither muggy nor frigid. So mostly the windows are closed. Nevertheless, I can recognize the Cardinal's call, the robin's tweet and the mockingbird's song. I also can recognize a dozen or so species by sight.

In Hawaii, with windows open, we awake to the chirpy, whistle and tweety sounds that make up the feathered choir outside the condo. Throughout the day, birds engage in a variety of intriguing vocalizations. I wish I could decipher their songs.

As afternoon converges on evening and the sun prepares to dip into the Pacific, a spectacular sunset is not always guaranteed. But an avian orchestra always accompanies the event. The heightened bird calls just at dusk remind me of my childhood. The mothers would call their roaming offspring home just as night would fall.

 This morning we twice had to clean the car windshield. We are lucky enough to park in a nice shady spot. The birds appreciate the monkey pod tree that shades our car as much or more than we do. Just goes to show you there is a price to pay for all the bird songs.

I've researched online the birds of Hawaii: lots of photos with descriptions of the various birds that inhabit the islands. But what I really would like is to recognize the species by their calls. And know what their calls mean. Wouldn't it be cool to sing to the birds on occasion.

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