Thursday, May 29, 2008

Big Birds

Today's Wonders of the World are... really Big Birds.

But no, not that one. (Thanks random embarrassed children and Cliff.)

I'm thinking more of the kind I've been looking for down by the river.
Remember where I walk Tanner the Slobber Dog? (here)
I used to see blue herons there. Have you ever seen a blue heron?

Now you can, thanks to free spirit at flickr..

I've seen them gliding over our little ribbon of the Enoree River, fishing and enjoying the shade.
But now that Tanner is a big doggy, he makes a lot of noise when he walks, whimpering because I won't let him chase the squirrels and the birds and the cats. Maybe its the noise that keeps them away.

I keep looking, but I haven't seen one in months.
They kind of remind me of these.

(Thanks, McSkeletor.)

I have a thing for storks too, even if they didn't bring babies and work for Walt Disney or Vlassic pickles.

Before I moved to France I hadn't ever seen a real live stork.
I thought they all looked like this.

Cute hat, stork.

Then we moved to France and went to Alsace at Christmas time. That place is a fairytale land at Christmas.
We stayed at the ecomusee near Colmar. If you like, hop on over to its website, here.

It was one of our favorite vacations. I couldn't stop looking at those houses...until I looked up. See what's on the roof? And the chimney?

And look at this...

And this...

(Stork pictures in Alsace thanks to cpf1 and garethac on flickr.)
Stork nests are a definitely a Wonder of the World.
If you have any doubt, watch this video. What a good mommy stork and daddy stork. So tell me, who brings their babies?

And have a Wonder-ful Thursday!
Love, Becky


Sherry/Cherie said...

I'm not very bird "savvy" -- I have never seen a blue heron up close and I've never seen a stork (I'd have bet the bank they looked like the animated ones I've seen all my life). I have to admit that there is a "majesty" to a big bird that the smaller ones just don't "carry".

TattingChic said...

Amazing post, Becky. I have actually seen a blue heron once on my walk by the beach. That bird was beautiful to watch and I consider myself very lucky as I think it was a pretty rare moment in time.

Susan Sandmore said...

My Dad took an awesome blue heron picture the other day! He hiked and waded with all his photographic equipment to get it.

I saw one fly over my house earlier this year--I had a nice clear view from my office window. So help me, for a full three seconds, I thought it was a Pterosaur. I seriously had to remind myself that I'm not living in the Cretaceous Period.

Stork babies are delivered Fed-Ex.

F.O.T. said...

My first thought when I saw the Big Bird pic was that I met the Disney characters Chip-n-Dale when I was a wee one. Funny that.

But on to birds...

Whether they are fossilized, real, stuffed or puppeted (is that a word?), I love them. The bird represents something primal within me.

Rosemary said...

Wow Becky!!
We have a big white heron that sits on our roof sometimes.
Your bird photos, especially the ones in France are amazing.
I love bird watching.

La Belette Rouge said...

I love birds. In fact I did a post on birds yesterday. Great minds think alike. I saw lots of storks in Morocco with huge nests. It was such a great site to see them nesting among that amazing Moroccan architecture.

Nilz said...

I like the photos and the way it has been presented. I love birds but not in cage. I like them to fly freely.

Rebecca Ramsey said...

It's great to find so many bird lovers among my friends! I should probably admit that though I love birds, I'm a little phobic when they get close to my ears.

Sherry/cherie, come for a visit and we can go looking together. Without Tanner our chances might be good to see one.

Tattingchic and Susan, glad to hear about heron encounters. So it's FedEx. Ohhhh.

Fot, I agree. It's the whole fly-away-if-I-want-to thing. I'd love to have that power. And beauty.

Rosemary, if I had a heron sit on my roof, I'd never want to go indoors.

la belette, storks in Morocco! Wow. I'd love to see that. I'd love to see Morocco, even if it didn't have storks.

Nilz, I agree. Lots of folks in France kept birds in cages, but I liked the free ones best. (Except when they flew in my house uninvited.)
Birds of any size are truly amazing.

JaxPop said...

Must be bird week - I posted about a pair of birds the other day - in a slightly different context.

We are loaded with all kinds of birds down here. Living at the beach & having our property border a nature preserve, we get to see all types - blue as well as great white herons, pelicans, cattle egrets, swallowtail kites, humongous black vultures, red hawks & eagles - to name a few.

From the back porch we get to watch lots of hummingbirds, doves, & some little bright yellow birds (name?).

Not to end on a negative note but... I never really liked Big Bird - His voice always got on my nerves.

Have a great day.

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Jaxpop, lucky you to see all those birds. That must be really grand. Not to get too personal, but do you and your neighbors have a bird poop problem? Or maybe the winged lovelies aren't as attracted to your property and cars as much as they seem to love my white minivan.

And don't feel bad about Big Bird. I know what you're talking about. I love Big Bird, but I have a few complaints about Dora the Explorer. (Don't hate me people!) Why must she yell everything? Answer me that!

liquidambar said...

People may not think of Philadelphia as a great place to see herons, but we have a wildlife refuge in the southwestern part of the city where they hang out quite a bit. Along with snowy egrets, red-winged blackbirds, and many others.

JaxPop said...

Hey Rebecca - No problems from overhead - we park in the garage. The pictures of the storks were great by the way. It must take forever to build those nests.

liquidambar - Just south of the Philly airport is Tinicum Island. We ran around in a 14 ft skiff on the Delaware River (when it was REALLY polluted) & hung out on that island. There are tons of awesome (& very large) birds over there. I can't believe I survived childhood. We actually swam in that sludge - yech. said...

Living in the middle of the city, you wouldn't expect I would see many birds, but it is amazing what lives here. The small park a block away is host to Canadian geese, which don't seem to go away in the winter any more. Green poop pellets everywhere. Seagulls also hang out there - they scare me, because they really are menacing like Alfred Hitchcock birds.
When I drive out of town, I see lots of blue herrons. The most beautiful sight, however, was a pair of white swans, gently floating down a stream next to the bike trail I was traveling. Gorgeous.
I love the video of the momma and daddy taking care of their eggs. Animals are so wonderful.
Thanks for the wonder of the day!

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Hey Jenn, how about that, bird watching in Philadelphia! I'd love to see them one day.

Jaxpop, I do think those nests are amazing. Kind of like Big Bird's. Stop--don't think of his voice if it annoys you.

qugrainne, I know what you mean about seagulls being menacing. Swans can be too. I was once attacked by some pretty swans when they got impatient for my bread. Ooh. Not a nice memory.