In the days of our 2020 quarantine when so much came to a halt, an uncanny silence became notable. Flights overhead were rare. Traffic on roadways and rails nearly ceased. It was the perfect moment for an amazing symphonic crescendo in the avian world. Songs and calls in the woods and across expanses of acreage stood out quite notably. I remarked to Karen about our good fortune in having both cover and open space around us. I was ushered back to my earliest life memories with birds.
Many of my early boyhood summer nights were spent sleeping on my grandfather’s screened porch. His small coastal farmstead was graced with grand oaks and tall pines. Early to bed meant the evening transition as some birds headed for their roosts and nests while dusk introduced the nocturnally gifted along with other woodsy chatter. It was a wondrous way to get a restful night. Dawn brought an early excitement to the new morning as the wooded areas came alive with activity, song as well as call among the birds I’d begun to regard as my special friends. This spring and summer have connected me with those early years of observation and listening. One of our Hill Country gifts that bring so many surprises with the seasons is the rich variety and rotation of the birds that share life near our rivers and creeks as well as in the canopied cover near and far. Several have nested and displayed their offspring with caution nearby. Others have come and gone this way in seasonal migratory journeys.