The other day we were in Waukegan to see a movie. On the way to the parking lot, Arthur noticed some unusual, bold bird art in what we presumed was an art gallery. We walked over to have a look, and found paintings by artist José F. Bolet in an empty store front. The paintings were placed there Part of the Waukegan Art Windows program, where empty storefronts are used to display works of art.
I’m not a big fan of the birds-as-humans ones. I do like the last one, though. What do you think?
I saw my first leucistic American Robin on Sunday afternoon on the way to Middlefork Savanna in Lake Forest. I had just parked the car at Elawa Farm and saw the bird before I even got out of the car. I laughed because I had already seen a photo of this same bird, the day before, posted on a friend’s Facebook page. I’ve posted these on Flickr so you can click through to see them bigger.
I’m learning how to handle birds in the Raptor Internship at Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation. A lot of the terms used in handling birds of prey come from falconry. Did you know that some common English-language idioms actually originate in falconry? I took the following chart from Wikipedia.
Meaning in falconry
in a bate
bating: trying to fly off when tethered
in a panic
of a hawk, with its crop full and so not wanting to hunt
no longer interested in something
of a hawk, caught from the wild when adult
looking exhausted and unwell, in poor condition; wild or untamed
under his/her thumb
of the hawk’s leash when secured to the fist
tightly under control
wrapped round his/her little finger
of the hawk’s leash when secured to the fist
tightly under control
I’d never heard the phrase in a bate before, but I do find the other connections fascinating. I especially would never have guessed fed up, under my thumb and wrapped around her little finger came from falconry, but really, they make perfect sense!
Last month we visited the fabulous and strange American Science & Surplus shop in Chicago. My dad used to take me to this oddball store when I was younger and I remember what fun it was for a curious kid to look through aisle after musty aisle of peculiar containers, mysterious military gear, unidentifiable tools and other baffling and strange things.
Among the treasures found on this last visit were some bird-themed goodies, natch.
This bird anatomy poster was made by Nova Rico of Florence Italy. I can’t find any information about it online as the company seems to specialize in globes now. The bird, organs and egg are all slightly raised. I’m not sure what kind of bird it is. It didn’t come with the key so I’m going to have some fun making that.
There were three different Fun Bendies Birdsticks to choose from. I rejected the purple pelican and green parrot for this blue toucan. It’s got a loop on the head for hanging but also comes on a long bendy stick. To hang or to stick, that is the question. The tag informs there are three other series of Fun Bendies: Flowersticks, Sticky Bugs, and Fishsticks.
Next I picked up two Endangered Species Reusable Stickers: Whooping Crane and California Condor. The condor one doesn’t ‘work’ anymore since the skeleton shows up in broad daylight. “Beautiful full color animals by day, glow in the dark skeletons by night!” How creepy is this?
You’re probably familiar with this woodpecker friction toy I picked up. I hadn’t seen one in years. Minutes of fun, I tell you.
I think it’s fun to visit different ethnic grocery shops and find new foods (when we travel we always make time for a neighborhood supermarket, where we might spend hours looking at everything). Last year at a Chinese grocery shop in Rotterdam we picked up a few things, including this box of animal crackers. Is that a happy box, or what?
I’m used to crackers shaped like big game like elephants, hippos or tigers. My favorites from this box were the pigeon (tasted like animal cracker), eagle (same) and penguin (same). Have you ever seen a porcupine animal cracker? How about a Tapir, or a dog? And isn’t that tiger kind of adorable-shaped?
I stumbled upon these great bird-themed Lego projects posted on Flickr a while back. Several were posted to The Mocingbird — A LEGO aviary group. Looks like some of them are from Legoland and some are individual endeavors. I think they’re all pretty neat.
bird watcher by Kalinago English, Creative Commons on Flickr
Flamingos by Loozrboy, Creative Commons on Flickr
Lego Land Dirty Birds by TwisterMc, Creative Commons on Flickr
Vulture, Legoland by bixentro, Creative Commons on Flickr
Legoland Florida 17 by NathanF, Creative Commons on Flickr
Legoland Florida 20 by NathanF, Creative Commons on Flickr
Slangen en vogels by kriskeller, Creative Commons on Flickr
LEGO Birds by taygete05, Creative Commons on Flickr
LEGO store diorama: Ducks by ksablan, Creative Commons on Flickr
Bird tree by Bill Ward’s Brickpile, Creative Commons on Flickr
LEGO store diorama: Yellow birds by ksablan, Creative Commons on Flickr
Decemebr 3rd: Cute bird by hober, Creative Commons on Flickr
Here are a few more (I’m not embedding them because they are not available to share via Creative Commons):
I had some fun with January’s recap of strange searches that brought up Magnificentfrigatebird.com, so I thought I’d keep track again in February. Here are some of the more interesting search terms visitors used to find their way to this site last month.
are grackles legal to shoot in texas Gosh, I hope not! A couple of years ago we received a custom request to design a Great-tailed Grackle over at Birdorable. The request came from a fan of the birds who happened to live in Texas. She said the birds were persecuted there as pests so we made this design for Grackle supporters: Support Your Local Grackle.
It was even picked up in Turkey, but here they got the story a bit mixed up:
The Swiss police arrest three in Lausanne for exchanging two children with an expensive bird.
Dona Greenwell offered two of the three children under her protection to Paul (46) en Brandy (27) Romero who had placed an advertisement asking 1500 dollars for their cockatoo. The 53 years old lorry driver said that she had made the offer because it was very difficult for her to look after three children for someone doing her job.
Who the biologic parents of the three children are still remains unclear. Swiss officials say the inquiry still goes on. The children are given under the protection of a two families in Lausanne.
There’s a movement to designate the Osprey as the state bird of Oregon (replacing the Western Meadowlark). A few months ago schoolchildren in Florida elected to name the Osprey the new state bird, to replace the Mockingbird. I love Ospreys as much as the next person (it’s even one of my favorite Birdorables), but how come they’re so popular as to be replacing existing state birds all of a sudden?
Osprey Hovering by U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Northeast Region, Creative Commons on Flickr