Common grackles

The common grackle is one of those birds that both irritates and fascinates.  A flock showed up in our yard in early spring, bringing with them noisy chatter and rowdy behavior at the feeders.  A pair or two stuck around, and during the past couple of months they have been through courtship, nesting, and are now raising a brood which clamor loudly for attention and food.  The juveniles are dull brown with dark eyes. The adults, with their beautiful iridescent colors and stern-looking golden eyes, seem to be devoted to the fledglings, looking out for them and eager to meet their needs.  If the past is any indication, they will all soon move on to places unknown, and the yard will once again be quiet and peaceable.

“It’s amazing how lovely common things become, if one only knows how to look at them.”  ~Louisa May Alcott

A stroll around the boardwalk

You never know what you’re going to see while strolling around the boardwalk at Reelfoot Lake State Park.  Here are some shots that were taken back in June and July.

… Dust if you must, but the world’s out there
the sun in your eyes, and the wind in your hair;
flutter of snow, a shower of rain,
This day will not come around again …
~Rose Milligan

Noisy Grackles

I often enjoy retreating to the quietness of our backyard to sit and enjoy nature.  But recently, the backyard was unusually noisy due to several families of Common Grackles.  The dull brown juveniles screeched and squawked, demanding their parents’ attention.  The adults chattered as they made continual trips to the feeders in order to satisfy the endless appetites of the insistent juveniles.  Though an interesting scene to observe, the disturbance made by the grackles was quite the opposite of the peace and quiet that I had been expecting to find.

“We love to expect, and when expectation is either disappointed or gratified, we want to be again expecting.”  ~Samuel Johnson

Common grackle

common-grackle

This adult male grackle was foraging for food amongst the needles of a cypress tree.  His shiny black plumage took on a glossy-iridescence when struck by the bright sunlight.

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.  ~Aaron Rose