This morning as I was driving, I saw a mockingbird chasing a crow in the air over a field of cows, kind of like this:
For some reason, it always gives me a sense of satisfaction watching little birds chasing and dive-bombing bigger ones, since they seem to be such underdogs. (Remember him? The original, that is.)
Or rather, underbirds.
Sometimes, the crows take their turn at being the underbirds by chasing hawks, like in this cool shot:
I am normally a huge fan of birds of prey and feel a bit sorry for them when I see them being chased and dive-bombed, with an occasional loss of feathers, but I have to respect the smaller birds chasing them–especially when it’s birds even smaller than crows and mockingbirds, like sparrows. After all, that takes some guts, doesn’t it?
If you click on the photos, you’ll be taken to the websites from which I borrowed them. The first one is from a site called Brooklyn Parrots. In this photo, it’s not a parrot, but a mockingbird and crow. I personally would caption it “A Brooklyn Dodger”. Ha! The second one comes from a school website and has some information about crows. They are actually very intelligent and interesting birds.
Here’s a link about mockingbirds or, more specifically, the Northern Mockingbird. I love mockingbirds and they are quite prolific in the South. The ringtone on my cell phone is of a mockingbird. One evening, when there was a mockingbird singing, I kept playing my ringtone. We were having a great conversation until it must have realized the strange mockingbird/human was being redundant, got bored, and flew away. Mockingbirds are very territorial and bold, hence the chasing of crows, who are known to eat small birds and eggs.
I used to think we had mockingbirds in New England, but I guess those were catbirds. Now there’s a paradoxical word–cat/bird! Apparently, catbirds are cousins of mockingbirds. The description from the mockingbird site is: “Gray Catbirds can also sound similar, but their phrases are more nasal, hurried, and slurred.” “Nasal, hurried and…slurred‘”? So…are we to believe that catbirds are the drunken, Northern version of their Southern cousins?
Perhaps. Hmm. Not sure how I feel about that. Incidentally, how does one determine if a bird is slurring?