Posted by: atowhee | July 22, 2022


I was sitting on a bench in our back garden, quietly reading. It was late afternoon and the squirrels were sleeping after hours of gorging on all the provender provided by nature and our “bird” feeders. No chicken had recently laid an egg, no lawn mowers within earshot. Quiet.
Without warning I heard soft wing flutter near my head, and something lightly passed over me close enough to ruffle my hair. I looked up and two Chestnut-backed Chickadees were in the purple-leafed plum overhead. Adult and a fledgling. It was certainly the youngster who grazed me. To that kid I was just part of the furniture and shrubbery, an inert object to navigate past while following mom or dad. It isn’t often that I have been so near a free-flying wild bird. A light breeze would have made a more powerful sensation.

JUNCO JAY JUNIOR. Last fall, and winter there was a scrub-jay in our garden with the parallel white tail feathers you see in a junco. I called her/him “Junco Jay.” Now a scruffy fledgling has showed up with white tail feathers–surely a next generation “Junco Jay.”


  1. Always fun to hear what flies by in your backyard.

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