Indigo bunting, scarlet tanager, robins

Indigo Bunting, painting by Louis Agassiz Fuertes

Even though there are lovelier birds than robins here, it can be dramatic to watch robins hunt and feed.    They are so very thorough.

A robin captured a fresh worm in her bill.  She hauled the wriggler across the hot pavement.  Two bitty steps pulling her cargo, then a rest.  Two more bitty steps.  Progress was slow but steady as she made her way from one side of the road to the other.  Halfway there, the worm broke in two.  This did not stop her from clipping the fragment in her bill and pulling it a quarter inch at a time until she got the worm to the other side then gently with the most delicate of manners she ate him tidbit by tidbit.  But before she tackled the eating of the worm she’d successfully carried to the grass, she returned to the hot pavement where the rest of the worm had begun to show signs of life.

Scarlet Tanager, photo by Terry Sohl

Again just as she did with the first half, the robin pulled the writher by her a bill a quarter inch at a time until he joined up with the other portion.

photo by Ryan Bushby

Did the two halves greet each other at their reunion?   Were they glad to see each other?  I know nothing of worm communication.  Now it was time for the feast.  She ate a dainty snatch at a time, did not gulp or grind.  She chewed slowly and swallowed silently as the best brought up of us do.  When the worm was a manageable size, she flew off with it in her bill to her nest to share with the rest of her family.


About Patricia Markert

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One Response to Indigo bunting, scarlet tanager, robins

  1. I love to think of you watching birds in Narrowsburg while I am watching birds in Cape May! Maybe they visit each other from time to time the way that you and I do!
    xo penelope

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