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Thursday, January 13, 2011

A Pert Little Fellow

Not the Pert Fellow of the title~I'm a female
A city girl born and bred~it wasn't until my family moved to Florida that I really noticed birds. It was 8F when we flew from St. Louis and 70F when we landed in Tampa. To a child that's a magical journey like no other.


I stepped outside to warmth, sunshine, orange trees in our backyard and pretty red birds. They were everywhere and they were singing their hearts out for me....cheer, cheer, cheer. It really was magical.

In the GOBN

So deeply was that moment imprinted in my memory, that when the light is just right and the temperatures are just so, a cardinal's song, can transport me to that magical moment when I first noticed the fat red bird in the orange tree.

But, it took moving to Tennessee for me to begin to appreciate birds. After grad school, I packed up my Sea Foam Green Fiat and moved into a big rental house with a wild backyard. I settled into life as a full time employed adult along with my two best friends from college!
Our rental house was on a busily traveled road, but, the back yard sloped down through the woods to a small creek. The long ago garden had a small bricked patio and a few birdhouses that we kept filled with inexpensive bird food. The kitchen table sat in an alcove of windows and we could all watch the acrobatic activities over coffee.
The neglected garden was a haven for blue jays, mockingbirds, doves, cardinals, robins and, many birds new to me. That first summer, I was introduced to Chickadees and the Tufted Titmouse. During the winters the finches descended in flocks and bullied the other birds. They were all wonderful to watch, but, the Tufted Titmouse stole my heart. (Folks, My content is being scraped, if you read this on another blog, please notify CandL )

He's a pert little fellow with a jaunty crest, dark eyes, mouse gray feathering and a touch of rust under his wings. He's a permanent resident of any garden he moves into~

Clay and Limestone is only a couple of miles away from my first Nashville home. This garden is on a busy street, in the middle of the suburbs with a wayback backyard and front garden that is a haven for me, the birds and other wildlife. The front garden is enclosed by Hedge, a behemoth wall of forsythia that not surprisingly is protection for birds and small mammals year round. (go here and here for Hedge's story) I've met even more delightful birds~the Rufous Sided Towhee, the Pileated woodpecker, Juncoes, Pine Siskins, White Breasted Nuthatches, Eastern Bluebirds, Carolina Wrens, Rose Breasted Grosbeaks, all the finches gold or purple, Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers, sparrows, and even a pair of owls that hunt in the garden at night. But, my heart still belongs to



That pert little fellow, the Tufted Titmouse.



Isn't he adorable!

xxoogail

This post was written by Gail Eichelberger for my blog Clay and Limestone, Copyright 2011. If you are reading this on another blog, it's been stolen, Please contact me for permission to copy, reproduce, scrape, etc.

43 comments:

  1. I so want to see that pert little fellow at my feeders! I don't know why I haven't but I continue to hope. I do have cardinals ... last night at dusk a pair came to the feeders to dine after all the other birds had left. It was a magical moment.

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  2. I love those moments Cindy~I see cardinals at the feeders before the sun is fully up~We must get the bluebirds and TTM to your garden. gail

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  3. He is adorable.
    Love the story about your rental after college and how the "wild" yard supported the birds. They need food and cover. Found in the "wild." :-)

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  4. A wonderful story, brilliant told, dear Gail. Boo to scrapers, btw. I too love that pert little fellow. Such amazing captures of him/her. :-)
    xxxooo
    Frances

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  5. Gail, what a lovely story! I love the Cardinals and all of the other birds, but the one that stole my heart and first made me a birder was a Chidkadee.

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  6. I agree, the tufted titmouse is adorable. I haven't seen any around here. Your bird photos are just incredible.

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  7. That first picture shows every shade of yellow-orange-red!!

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  8. Gail, I love all your bird friends - the cardinals and titmouses are the sweetest I think.

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  9. I'm very fond of the tufted titmouse too. I had them last year for the first time, so far they haven't been back this year.

    I think the chickadee is my favorite because they will stay close by when I fill the feeders. I can just hear them and they bring a smile to my face.

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  12. Love the photos of your birdies. I was just taking pictures at lunch of the ones in our backyard. It is my enjoyment to watch them .

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  13. Your first picture isn't a fellow,
    it's a female!

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  14. When we lived in Michigan, I used to see Cardinals all the time. I miss them but we still get some pretty birds here in the Rocky Mountains. The Stellar Jay is one of the most obnoxious yet beautiful around here.

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  15. We love watching the birds at our feeders outside our kitchen window. Your pics are fabulous!
    Suzanne

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  16. Carla, Yes I know and isn't she gorgeous~The pert little fellow is
    gailthe Tufted Titmouse later in the post~

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  17. A bird-lover's idea of a great post! Thanks, Gail! :-)

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  18. Gail,

    Enjoyed your titmouse and House Finches. One of those looked like a Purple Finch too.

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  19. We share many of the same species of birds. The little titmouse is very brave and the first to explore a new feeder and announce it to the bird kingdom. But my heart belongs to the regal Cardinal! We once had a cardinal that would peck on the kitchen window to let us know the feeder was empty, and he eventually brought his whole family onto the deck, where we could enjoy their antics just a couple feet away, on the other side of a sliding glass door.

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  20. Birds do afford us many hours of entertainment just by living their lives. Beautiful shots. I especially liked the titmouse photos. Such rascals they are.

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  21. I too love all your visiting birds. I think your lady cardinal is a real looker. I am betting she has a few male suitors.

    I have a question about the scrapers. How do they hijack a blog? Mine is in Turkey now, and it took me a lot of languages to figure it out. Turkey was like the last one I tried. They rewrote the text too. Nothing bad when I had it translated.Anyone know?

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  22. Oh what lovely birds. I have all these in my garden too and I love them all. I agree that the Tufted Titmouse is a cute little one! Your photographs are incredible!

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  23. Ohhhhh, Gail, these are just fabulous! I have cardinal envy because we don't have them in our garden--there are some in the region, but it's a bit too windy here for them. Your photography is fabulous, as always.

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  24. Those are really wonderful shots of the birds. I really enjoy admiring them. I have just seen many beautiful birds in a nature park but didn't get to capture any images half as good.

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  25. It's wonderful that you've provided such a great habitat for so many types of birds! I love the cardinals here, especially now in the winter.

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  26. You had me with the first cardinal! But I must agree that pert little fellow is darling. And your photos are wonderful!

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  27. I love watching birds at the feeder but wish I knew more about the different types. Great pictures!

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  28. What a cute little fellow; I can see why he has won your heart! I enjoyed the story of your introduction to bird-watching, too, Gail. I still can't identify many of the birds I see, but the cardinal is still my favorite, and not just because it's the state bird of Illinois.

    Boo to whoever is stealing your content!

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  30. What a cute little fellow; I can see why he has won your heart! I enjoyed the story of your introduction to bird-watching, too, Gail. I still can't identify many of the birds I see, but the cardinal is still my favorite, and not just because it's the state bird of Illinois.

    Boo to whoever is stealing your content!

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  31. I've always liked the titmouse. They just seem so friendly yet fearless at the same time. Like the chickadees they really don't care if I'm there or not!

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  32. A lovely post Gail. The Titmouse is adorable as is the chickadee. We always had a bird feeder outside the kitchen window when I was growing up, and the same with our apartment in Chapel Hill and rental house in PA. Birds are such beautiful and fascinating creatures.

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  33. The Tufted Titmouse is perhaps the most adorable bird on earth. I'm sure their eyes are bigger, or rounder than most birds, and they're so placid. There's something about Cardinals though, as beautiful as they are, that says that selection in the bird world has run amok. Their brash color, to me, just seems to screech at the nearest predator 'eat me!'. They are beautiful, but they lack the quiet beauty of the Titmouse. (By the way, sorry to hear your content is being lifted, it's happened to us too. It irks me to no end, and it's not easy to stop!)

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  34. You really do take stunning bird photos. So many colourful feathered friends! Mind you, they are clearly made very welcome in your garden. I want to learn about our own, less colourful, birdlife. Digging up at the allotment the soundtrack includes some wonderful birdsong. I would love to learn who it is I am listening to.

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  35. I love your Cardinal birds thaat the Tufted Titmouse iss just adorable

    Thanks for sharing

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  36. A delightful story and I'm impressed that you were so taken with birds at such a young age. Love your photos Gail. I'll be posting some photos next week of how mean one of our Titmouse was behaving the other day, shame, shame, shame...

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  37. Really beautiful pictures. I like the pretty grey bird's name "Tufted Titmouse". It is wonderfully singsong. Have a great weekend. Jennifer

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  38. What an amazing journey & with all that beauty to admire.

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  39. Bird watching is always good for your you. I find it reduces stress for me after a long day. Thanks for sharing!

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  40. As I write this comment I am watching a cardnial enjoy his breakfast at our feeder. Birds bring us so much joy. It is great to watch them.

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  41. What a great post! Birds that come to our feeders are part of my appreciation of nature everyday. It's a gift.

    Lisa

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  42. Wonderful post Gail! I love your photos of the female Cardinal and the Chickadee! Fabulous! I too love the little Tufted Titmouse!

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Let us be grateful to people who make us happy;
they are the charming gardeners
who make our souls blossom.


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