Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bad Birds

"Hush, little baby, don't say a word, Mamma's gonna buy you a mockingbird. If that mockingbird don't sing, Mamma's gonna buy you a diamond ring".

What a silly promise Mamma made! A mocking bird NOT singing?? Mamma sure got out of that one easy enough!

What ever happened to the sweet little song birds that used to populate the garden? All I seem to see (AND HEAR) are those little black dive bombers that attack cats and poop all over my car and the ever "singing" Mocking Bird. I do have to admit to spotting an occasional hummingbird; I'd see more if I fed them.

This morning at 6:30, I was painting some rebarb for holding up the tomatoes and there were two mockingbirds going to town. I was getting a headache - too early for such conversation especially since I heard them all during the night.

Come to find out, it's the single male that does most of the singing at night. I think if he was the quite shy type, he might get a date! Who wants to hear all that jabbering all the time? The female rarely sings in the summer, usually only when the male has left the territory. Now what does that tell you?? Is she happy or sad?

Throughout history, a lot of attention has been given to this annoying bird. Walt Whitman and Richard Henry Wilde wrote their famous poems. Harper Lee's, To Kill A Mockingbird (I'v fantasized about this) is quoted as saying, "Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird." Why, I ask, would it be a sin??? Don't get me wrong, you know I would never hurt an animal.

Another strange fact: Tennessee, Texas, and Florida all have the mockingbird as their state bird. Again, I ask why? Can you imagine all the beutiful birds they must have in Florida??

Okay, I will give this little creature some credit. Not only can it perform 39 species' songs and 50 call notes, but it also can mimic sounds such as that of a barking dog, squeaky hinges, notes from a piano and even a cackling hen, so expertly that even an electronic analysis could not tell the difference between the mockingbird and the original.

Monsieur Fournier puts these walnuts out for the birds in their garden in Provence. He even made the little cage holder for them. Isn't that sweet? The french name for bird is oiseau/single or oiseaux/plural. I wonder if they have mocking birds in France??

Tomorrow, I will share pictures of my tomato project!! T.G.I.F.!!!

1 comment:

Jilly said...

What a lovely blog! I love your introduction - like you, I'd find it hard without my garden. I lose myself in it, forget my problems, dream. I'm in America at the moment and what am I doing? - worrying that someone is watering my plants!

Just saw you listed Menton DP and thankyou so much for that and your comments, Nancy.