If you visit Arabia Mountain, you need to pay attention. If you hike there, try to look carefully at everything around you. And it would be good also to maintain silence so you won't disturb the wildlife. We saw a flock of cedar waxwings feeding on...you guessed it, the cedar trees! The diamorpha (the red stuff!) is growing in the sand pits on the mountain. And as we walked along, we were pleased to see a flutter of a yellow butterfly. It hovered over my head and almost landed on me. I think that this butterfly is a cloudless sulphur.
The cedar waxwings were very high in the trees but trust me, they were cedar waxwings, I promise! We heard the flutter of their wings before we saw them. I have the photo below to show you what they look like. Once you see one, you will never forget it. They are magnificent birds.
With thin, lisping cries, flocks of Cedar Waxwings descend on berry-laden trees and hedges, to flutter among the branches as they feast.
The above is from the Audubon Society website, so you see, you really do need to use not just your eyes but your ears when you want to view wildlife! There were a lot of people hiking on Arabia Mountain on Sunday but I wonder how many saw as much as we did?
And even though this is about Arabia Mountain, I think my advice would also be fine for anyplace else in the world. Shhh....be quiet and listen! You don't want to scare anything off that you might want to see!
Beautiful birds! They are so hard to catch in a photo. I got a couple of photos of a hawk the other day, with the prerequisite help of a zoom lens. I have never seen a cedar waxwing. I remember the first time I saw a cardinal, on a snowy day in Dubuque, when I was in seminary. It was amazing.ReplyDelete
Oh! I am thinking of you seeing a cardinal for the first time, against the snow, I think that is one of the most extraordinary sights in our country!Delete
And you are right, the cedar waxwings are really beautiful and even if you can only catch a glimpse of them, it is still quite a sight. We have also seen hawks, vultures and owls, in our neighborhood and at Arabia Mountain, we love to observe our wildlife!
Oh! And I am remembering that your recent sermon told us to pay attention, so anyone reading this, please go to Dennis' blog and read his sermon!
From a very early age, our parents and grandparents taught me and my sister to be quiet and not run around when out in the woods or elsewhere in nature. Of course we wanted to see squirrels and birds and other animals, so we heeded their advice - mostly; we still were children and naturally did want to run and laugh out loud every now and then, too. But we managed to limit that to the playgrounds, most of the time.ReplyDelete
The bird is very beautiful. It is so easy for people to overlook a lot of detail when they are out. They are either dashing about on bikes or - even worse - in their cars, or they get so absorbed in conversation that they fail to perceive their surroundings properly. It is one reason why I like walking on my own so much - nobody to distract me ;-)
(Not that I am unsociable - I do love walks with my Mum, my sister or RJ, but they are different.)
I notice that when the birds are feeding in the trees, they don't seem to mind people walking by talking quietly, but if someone is so loud they are almost shouting, the birds don't seem to like that one bit and will fly away every time!Delete
Funny thing, I never hear parents say to their children "be quiet" anymore. Not ever, not once! That must be a thing of the past around here. Maybe they do and I just don't notice because the kids are so loud! LOL.
We saw cedar waxwings at Panola Mountain recently when C. was with us, and they were on the cedars there too!
Another really interesting bird, which I have never heard of before. They are really cute with the black eye patch, and look a lot like a cardinal to me. I like to pay attention to my surrounds when I walk by our local creek - I often encounter rare birds and other creatures. Always have a camera!ReplyDelete
You would love this bird too, Patricia! And sometimes even with a camera, they are hard to capture in a photo, that photo that Richard took, the bird was VERY high in the tree!Delete
Perhaps your opening sentences should appear at the entrance to every woodland and countryside trail. Sound advice!ReplyDelete
Thank you, Graham! If only everyone would heed my sound advice! :-)Delete
I'll never forget the first time I saw cedar waxwings. A whole flock of them landed across the street where I worked and I didn't recognize them, so looked them up on the internet to see what they were. They must have been migrating south at the time.ReplyDelete
It is so wonderful how much easier it is to identify birds now with the internet. For years, we used to run to our little bird book and try to identify them by photos, and that can be hard to do! That must have been a thrill for you to see all those cedar waxwings!!Delete
What a majestic little bird they are! Quite haughty looking, actually! :)ReplyDelete
Don't mistake their sleek feathers and jaunty crest with being haughty, it is just their nature! :-)Delete
Stepping outside in the morning, i listen. The birds always seranade me when i go to get the paper if i'm listening!ReplyDelete
The birds are singing there, glad the cats are not after them, since they are inside with you!Delete
Good advice, Kay.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Laurie! Tell me what you see when you are in nature!!Delete
I love cedar waxwings! It is always a treat to see one because they are not all that common up here in northern Alberta. But you can occasionally spot one eating the berries from a mountain ash (rowan) tree.ReplyDelete
I have only seen them this time of year. I think they might be year round in the most Northern counties of Georgia.Delete
Kay, I love your mountain there. So much to see. My daughter gets cedar waxwings at her house in northern Indiana. I would love to have them here. Blessings to you and yours, xoxo,SusieReplyDelete
Tell you what, Susie, I will tell the cedar waxwings to visit you, okay? So look out for them! :-) Be funny if you see some now, let me know! :-)Delete
You find the most interesting things on your climbs. The diamorpha makes a great picture.ReplyDelete
The diamorpha will grow all through the winter and then, in the Spring, the bright red will be all over the mountain and THEN, each one has a tiny white flower on each red stalk. It is incredibly beautiful and I never tire of seeing it or telling people to notice it.Delete
I'd enjoy visiting.ReplyDelete
Come on down, John! It is an easy walk, otherwise I couldn't do it! LOL.Delete
A very beautiful place! A good reminder to look down and up and all around to see what you can see. xxReplyDelete
Look down and up and all around! YES! I need to speak with you before I do my posts, you got it just right, my friend!! :-)Delete
Nice photos. We get waxwings here as well in winter feeding on red berries as they fly over to escape the snow in Scandinavia and Russia every late autumn. Beautiful birds and not that easy to photograph.ReplyDelete
You have waxwings too! I love the birds that I have seen in England. I know I should think of them as British birds but since I have only been to the southeast of England, those are the only birds I know there! :-)Delete
Arabia Mountain is always beautiful, in every season. Paying attention is good advice no matter where one is!ReplyDelete
Beautiful in every season, you have been paying attention to my blog! :-)Delete
Sounds like a beautiful walk! I happened upon the turn-off to go there a few months ago - I'll have to do that sometime.ReplyDelete
Oh yes, please do! You might just see me walking around there! Make sure to try to go in the Spring, the wildflowers are truly spectacular...of course, not forgetting the Yellow Daisies in September and October!!Delete
This makes me think I really need to take a trip up to the Peak District some time. It's our local mountain range. Well, it ain't that local but it's the closest I could get.ReplyDelete
The Peak District, I have only heard of it, so I just looked it up. There is also some lovely rock there too and the photo on the website showed it with the sun shining and it looked lovely. Please go there and enjoy it for me too!Delete