Surprised by What I Know

At her beautiful blog, Toni wrote, “We were surprised at how many birds we can now identify.”  It reminded me of how surprised I was the other day when I took the dog for a walk at one of our usual spots.

    Intensely Blue Sky Day

  • Pileated Woodpecker
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • Chickadee
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Chestnut-sided Warbler
  • Wood Thrush
  • Wood-Pewee
  • Catbird
  • Scarlet Tanager
  • Great-crested Flycatcher
  • American Crow
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • Red-eyed Vireo

Only one of those birds let me have a glimpse, yet I knew they were all there by the songs.  It was one of those crystal clear, intensely blue sky kind of days and it seemed that all the birds were showing off.

I don’t know what the learning process is for a song to finally sink in and stay in my gray matter…  But here I was, walking along and I realized… “Gosh, I guess I’ve been learning stuff!”

Lest I get to feeling too proud of myself, two or three more songs that I can’t identify…  Hmm…  How can I find out who THEY are?…

5 thoughts on “Surprised by What I Know

  1. Jen thanks for mentioning me. I am so looking forward to Saturday and meeting you.

    It is amazing how much we learn and don’t even realize it.

  2. My guess is that you have so keen an interest in learning about the natural world ,that bird songs ,as well as plant identifications ,have found a ready niche in the grey matter of your brain. If that desire to learn was not there, I doubt that you would remember so much. Just think how much you will know, even with the inevitable function of the forgetting curve, in the years to come.

  3. I know exactly what you mean! Although my knowledge of birdsong would best (and generously) be described as “basic,” I do find myself IDing birds by ear more and more each time I’m out.

  4. Good for you Jenn! (I would love the hear a Wood Thrush again someday)
    I review my birdsong CD all the time, but there are still some I never remember because I don’t hear them often enough. Anyway, it just gives you another excuse to spend more time outside…..

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