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Tony Grist

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Birdies [May. 21st, 2012|09:38 am]
Tony Grist
The earliest bird begins tweeting shortly before 4 o'clock. The song dips and rises as if it were speaking Swedish. I'm half asleep and try to fit words to notes- "I'm a birdie, me"- but the song outpaces me and is more complicated than my brain can deal with so early in the morning. I'm hopeless at identifying bird-song. I know what a dove sounds like and a cuckoo (it's decades since I heard a cuckoo in the wild) but the high-pitched voices of the dawn chorus all sound the same to me. I'm hopelessly unmusical. 

The starlings are bringing their young'uns to our yard. Yesterday I saw a mother feeding a baby as big as herself. This morning she's brought it to the same place- the tree hung with fat-filled coconut shells- and abandoned it there, as if to say, "You've seen how it's done, now get on with it."
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: michaleen
2012-05-21 10:46 am (UTC)
They start singing here between four and five. Don't know what it is, but somehow assumed it to be a European starling. Not sure why.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 11:09 am (UTC)
Starlings don't so much sing as squawk. Noisy critters.
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[User Picture]From: michaleen
2012-05-22 09:55 am (UTC)
I blame the Beatles, myself.
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[User Picture]From: idahoswede
2012-05-21 11:33 am (UTC)
The ones with the rapidly insane eeeeee-oooo, eee-ooooo, eeee-ooooo are probably blue tits - small but LOUD. A beautiful wildly varied song that doesn't repeat itself is a blackbird.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 03:55 pm (UTC)
It may well have been a blackbird then. I know they're around.
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[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2012-05-21 04:33 pm (UTC)
I'm told that blackbirds are the first to start up in the morning. They are great singers. Chaffinches go "pink pink" and great tits say "tzeeeeeee".
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 07:16 pm (UTC)
I don't think we have chaffinches. Tits, yes.
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[User Picture]From: faunhaert
2012-05-21 12:07 pm (UTC)
"too tooo hahahah!"
sounding like a mad machine gun
are cardinals,

"peter peter peter " are blue jays

usually i can ignore the birds,
its the cat woken up they the birds thinking its
feeding time jumping on top of my head
and nugying my hair is the hard one.

the starlings are here today too-
stripes with yellow pointy beaks.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 03:58 pm (UTC)
I think it's the light that wakes me, not the birds. Once I've registered what time it is I go back to sleep.

There are no cardinals here. We have jays, but I don't think there are any in the immediate vicinity. Starlings are common.
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[User Picture]From: lblanchard
2012-05-21 02:00 pm (UTC)
We have a mockingbird that runs through a repertoire of several bird songs and otherness -- including robins, cardinals, blue jays, house finches, seagulls, sirens, and car alarms. He sits atop the cross on Shiloh Baptist Church across the street. Every so often he leaps into the air and displays his white stripes so make sure all the other mockingbirds know this is *his* church.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 03:59 pm (UTC)
Clever bird.

There's something round here that does a nifty impression of a car alarm, but it won't be a mocking bird; we don't have those round here(more's the pity).
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2012-05-21 02:12 pm (UTC)
There is a large pine tree outside our bedroom window that is full of birdsong at about 5 AM. The finches are my favourite singers.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-05-21 04:00 pm (UTC)
The only finches I see round here are goldfinches- perhaps the most brightly coloured of all small British birds.
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