[Tweeters] Morning Chorus, and a Haiku

Joshua Glant josh.n.glant at gmail.com
Thu May 14 08:21:21 PDT 2015

Hello Tweets,

This morning at 6:50 AM, I leaned on my bedroom windowsill to see (?) what I could hear. I was quite satisfied with the results! I compiled a list below. I wrote the 4-letter code as I heard the bird, then extended it and added details later.

Olive-sided Flycatcher - Quick-THREE-beers!

Wilson's Warbler - At least two, singing their cascading songs near and loud.

Townsend's Warbler - Classic TOWA-type song; buzzy and rising, finishing with a high-low-high sharp note.

Swainson's Thrush - FOY in the yard (second of the year); I first heard the bird calling from a seemingly low perch a few times (could have been up high), and a minute later a soft spiraling song rose from the undergrowth just to confirm that he really had arrived.

American Robin - Ubiquitous.

Brown Creeper - One faint song at one point.

Song Sparrow - Loud and ringing, pretty close to the window.

Red-Breasted Nuthatch - Enk! Enk! Enk!

Golden-crowned Kinglet - Singing and calling; the small voice of the forest.

Spotted Towhee - Singing.

Bewick's Wren - Singing.

Douglas Squirrel - Not a bird, but notable anyways! Chattered once in a shrilly torrent of sharp notes.

My only misses were American Crow and Pacific-slope Flycatcher, both of which are often heard in the morning.

Update: at 7:40 AM, both species were calling loudly! A complete morning chorus.

At 7:48, a Brown Creeper was at (and/or near) our suet feeder! Only the 4th visit ever to our feeder tree by a Brown Creeper.

On the way to school, the Olive-sided Flycatcher gave me one sweet song to send me off (forgive my anthropomorphism; I just love that song!) and Wilson's and Townsend's Warblers were very vocal near my house. Either a group of TOWAs and WIWAs just came here from somewhere else on the island, or a group of warblers migrated north last night despite the rainy conditions!

Anyways, there's my morning. Oh, and two last things: yesterday there was a fledgling junco at our feeder! We was pecking quietly at the ground.

And last but not least: a haiku, titled simply:


Though the sky is gray
The the smell of blossoms still hangs
Wet Wilson's Warbler


Inspired by a walk to my local park, Ellis Pond. Highlights included a heard-only Wilson's Warbler (hence the haiku reference), Bushtits, and a soggy crow that was quite confiding!

The trick to a good haiku is, as I've learned, to show rather than tell (a method, coincidentally, good for memoir writing, as my English teacher explained yesterday). A truly great haiku uses seasonal themes in a meaningful way, aided by the use of "season words" (blossoms). I hope I've achieved that here today!

Good birding, Joshua Glant

Mercer Island, WA

Josh.n.glant at gmail.com

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