10
Jun
09

Take a “Bird Talk” Walk

June 10, 2009Birdfeeder 2007-07

Take a “Bird Talk” Walk

In addition to my container garden which is right outside my back door, I also have a bird feeding area. I love watching the different birds who come to my feeders – goldfinches, a downy woodpecker, tufted titmouse (I wonder what the plural is…titmice?), chickadees, sparrows, starlings, purple finches, brown-headed cowbirds, mourning doves, cardinals, mockingbirds.

When I first put out my feeders, I knew many of the birds but not all of them. It was fun, and therapeutic, looking through my bird book trying to identify birds that I didn’t know. (Click here to learn more about the therapeutic benefits of Bird Feeding and Watching) What made it even more fun was that another friend of mine had also set up bird feeders in her yard.

We would call each other and talk about what kind of birds we saw, the kinds of seed we put out, how to tell the difference between a starling and a grackle, how to attract woodpeckers, etc. We’d look up information about different birds in books or on the internet and share interesting facts we learned.

Birdhouse 2007-11For example, did you know that starlings are not native to the United States? In the 1890s some Shakespeare enthusiasts decided to introduce all species of birds which appeared in Shakespeare’s works. One-hundred starlings were released in New York. Anyone who recognizes a starling can attest how well they have thrived here in the US.

This hobby has created a multitude of therapeutic activities for us. We also put up a couple of nesting boxes which have doors you can open to look inside and watch the birds as they build their nest and lay their eggs. I use the nesting boxes to encourage me to go outside and walk around my yard and explore. My physical and occupational therapists have helped me figure out where best to place outdoor chairs so that I have places to rest.walk in park

This year I’m expanding on the therapeutic benefits of my bird watching hobby to include learning to identify bird songs when I am outside. (Click here to learn more about the therapeutic benefits of taking a “Bird Talk” Walk) The next time you’re outside, take a few minutes to listen to bird songs. If you live in a place congested with noise pollution, go to a park with a friend or family member to listen to the birds. Listening to the various songs can be uplifting, and learning which birds are singing is a great way to exercise your brain cells!

© Angela Cramer, 2008-2009

Last photo is the property of Jupiterimages made available through subscription:
© Jupiterimages Corporation, 2008-2009 www.clipart.com

Other photos are the property of Angela Cramer, © Angela Cramer, 2008-2009

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