Friday, November 12, 2010

A Bird in the Hand

We are blessed, here in the Pinckney Michigan area, to be surrounded by parks. Within a 20 minute drive are three State Recreation areas, with approximately 37,000 combined acres of land with hiking, mountain bike and equestrian trails. The Huron River winds past nearby, and we have 50-plus lakes in our area. In addition, there are five MetroParks within that 20 minute radius. Kensington is the largest of these at 4,481 acres. A big chunk of that is Kensington Lake, but they also have a nature center and nature trails with an active heron rookery.

Lori and I stopped by Kensington recently with one purpose in mind--to feed the birds. I had seen others do it, and had been followed by birds as we walked the trails in the past, but we had never remembered to bring seed. So we filled a baggie with sunflower seeds and peanuts, made our way to a sunny bench, and sat with outstretched hands. It didn't take long for the birds to make an appearance.

What a sensation, to have the tiny little toes of a chickadee clasped to the end of your fingers. They are so light that if not for their pointy claws you would hardly know they were there.

First the chickadees came, but soon Tufted titmice joined the fray.

Lastly the nuthatch came in for a bite.

The birds were all around, on the ground below our feet, on the bench seat and back, even hoping across our shoes. To be so close to hear their wings beat and see the light glint in their eyes was a wonderful treat. No doubt we'll be going back again.

And while a bird in the hand may be worth two in the bush, I'll take 'em any way I can get 'em!

And just a quick mention, we here at Bear Track Studios are having our annual Open House at our home gallery, on Saturday, November 13, from 10 am to 6 pm. My studio will also be open. Walk the trails, watch the birds, look at (and buy!) great art, have a snack and a chat. We'd love to see you!

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