Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Invisible Chickadees

Did you know that chickadees can turn themselves invisible? Yes, it's true. I can speak from experience!

Today I went to one of my favourite parks, Happy Rolph's Bird Sanctuary. It's a favourite spot for families in the summer, with a petting zoo and duck pond and lots of room to run. In the winter, though, it's usually devoid of people. The animals are tucked in a nice cozy barn, and the playground is abandoned.

The ducks are still there, even though it is completely frozen over this year. An attendant comes around with buckets of corn to feed them, and if they want to swim around duckily, they can fly a few dozen meters north to Lake Ontario and play among the ice floes.

But the chickadees... Ah, yes. I can hear them as I walk quietly through the woodland, up the hill from the pond. They cheep and twitter in the trees, so I know they're there, but they refuse to show themselves. They do it just to torment me, I'm sure! The chickadees at home, and even the ones in Alberta, all did the same thing. The chatter among themselves but as soon as I get close, blink! And they disappear! They would occasionally show themselves, just long enough to string me along, then disappear again! Darn chickadees! How can I not be insulted when I only see them when they come out to moon me? (See his little birdy butt there?)
Well, that's okay. I had a very enjoyable walk on a beautiful day, I got some fresh air and exercise, got some nice shots of seeds and frozen pond drippings, and I got to watch the ducks bob around with chunks of ice
and I got to hear the chickadees tweeting invisibly in the bushes.
At last! One brave little soul showed himself high up in the branches of a bare tree. I quickly focused in, and managed one shot. If you look really closely, you can see the chickadee right in the middle of the photo.
Now wasn't that worth a whole afternoon?