I like this photo as it is a good kickoff to Memorial Day Weekend. We celebrate Memorial Day as the start of the summer season, but its real meaning, of course, is much more important and somber. The name mourning dove itself reflects this reality, but the bird’s pose is also somewhat reflective. Thanks to our fallen heroes.
Have a great Memorial Day Weekend everybody.
(Repeat text for context: I’m running out of COVID-19 lockdown themes so from now until things get back to some semblance of normalcy, I will simply post my best photo from the previous day. You could say it fits because of its uncertainty and challenge. I’ll call the series “A Day on Merganser Lake,” even though that’s not the real name of the lake I live near in southwestern Connecticut, it’s just a nod to my favorite duck family.)
Photo by Chris Bosak A Mourning Dove sits on a nest in early July at Sellecks/Dunlap Woods in Darien.
Here’s my latest For the Birds column on when it’s safe to take down trees without disrupting nesting birds. (The above photo of a Mourning Dove sitting on eggs was taken in early July 2015.)
By CHRIS BOSAK
For the Birds
Procrastinators rejoice. I’m going to give you an excuse to put off a few chores for another month or so.
Do you have trees on your property that need to come down? Bushes that need to be pruned? Perhaps a field or meadow that needs to be mowed?
Well, I’m not only giving you permission (not that you need that anyway) to hold off for a while, but urging you to do so.
An interesting email came my way this week from a New Hampshire couple. They had purchased property about 25 years ago that at the time was an abandoned Christmas tree lot. Most of the trees are now dead or dying and need to come down. The couple, to their credit, wants to make sure the nesting season is over before they go forward with any of the work.
So, just when is it safe to take down trees or cut fields that may house nesting birds?
There’s no exact date, of course. In general, though,
Photo by Chris Bosak A Mouning Dove perches in a tree after a New England snowfall in February 2015.
It’s true that many people love Mourning Doves, but in my opinion, the large backyard bird is still way underrated.
I’m just as guilty as anybody by not giving the Mourning Dove its due. Rarely do I write about Mourning Doves (although I have on occasion.) It’s not often I hear about people seeing Mourning Doves, although they are probably being seen by just about everybody on a daily basis.
It’s often overlooked _ again I’m guilty of this too_ when relaying what birds were seen at the feeder that day. Chickadees, juncos, nuthatches, titmice, white-throated sparrows, cardinals. What about Mourning Doves? Surely they were there, too. Mourning Doves are spectacularly beautiful birds when looked at closely. The subtle tones of the plumage change with the light and that blue eye ring never gets old. Also, their song (cooing) _ although it’s a sad song and indeed is the reason for the bird’s name _ always seems to cheer us up when we hear it.
So here’s to the Mourning Dove … with appreciation.
Photo by Chris Bosak A Mourning Dove looks for seeds under a feeder during a snowy day in Jan. 2014.
Here’s my next photo in the series of 2014 photos that I never got around to looking at and posting. Here’s a Mourning Dove looking for food under my birdfeeder during a snowy day last winter. The photo was taken in January 2014. Check out the subtle colors in this beautiful bird.