Recently in Birds Category

the plastic bird was not enough. now a fine black mesh is wrapped around several pots and places on the balcony. some monster had arrived to put pig back with eons. there were bits and pieces of bits and pieces all over the floor. had a visitor tried to make me hate them? were the gifts of guano expressions of love?
i was not very good at reading the signs.
not sure the mesh will do anything. if it will not work, the next step is going to be the purchase of a bucket of toothpicks.

walking to mr. suds later in the afternoon, i noticed a pigeon that looked as if half of it were glued to the middle of the ocean parkway service road. the bird must have broken a wing and perhaps more and was now trying to take off, in heart breaking slow motion, maybe at a wave a second.
almost wanted another car to arrive and free it of pain right there. or was i supposed to break its neck?
was this somehow connected to how much i had hated pigeons just a few minutes prior?
i imagined that the best outcome of this would be one of the cats living around the building finding the pigeon, killing it gently and then feeding it to its young.

when i walked past the spot a few minutes later, that seemed exactly what i saw about to happen. a not very large female cat was carrying the freshly killed pigeon in its teeth. the cat had to walk almost upright because of her front legs being almost too short to carry the large bird without letting it touch the ground. the pigeon, with its iridescent belly facing forward, had its wings wide open, together the animals looked like a griffin, or some other yet to be described mythical animal.

looked down on my neighbours balcony. the mother pigeon was still sitting on the nest she had made in one of my neighbour's flower boxes. next to her was a small open eggshell. i at first thought that some other animal had taken the content of the egg and that the mother was sitting there traumatized. an odd thought but probably conditioned by my experience of seeing a pigeon killed just minutes prior. when i looked again and from a different angle, i could clearly see a yellowish, naked, freshly hatched thing under the mother's belly moving slowly.
it looked as if it were two little birds even. but i think it was just one.

then i noticed a second nest on my neighbours balcony, in a larger, round pot. what just a few days ago appeared to be a lucky accident now seemed to be a breeding ground for birds right under my nose. my feelings for pigeons was split back into pigs and eons.

quite a circle of emotions for a simple gray sunday, maybe as gray as the underwing of a pigeon in flight.

I had seen a tiny bit of the work at the National Gallery again, and I ran out of time, the place was closing, I had to step back out into the sun. There was a curious bird, trying to make contact with a newspaper reading woman on a bench. She ignored him and was perhaps a bit upset that I seemingly was taking pictures of her. But it was about the bird. Really. And the bird seemed to like being photographed. It even eventually sat on the edge of a podium and sang a song very much synchronized to the sound of the traffic on Pennsylvania Avenue. I was so busy making sure the recording works, I did not even notice when the bird left...
Hmm, will need to rescan this image to show more of the detail hidden in the expression of this really dangerous guy. He was ready to just jump and conquer and to fight... and to eat some good piece of the mel somebody had left on the outside table in the restaurant... Well, I think he was looking and some piece of food that had been pulled to the floor by other birds... (Note to self: need to learn that great scannin' machine... or at least better...)


There were flashing lights in the penthouse suite of a building not far from here. They were very bright, very flashing. Minutes later there was a helicopter with a searchlight, it was suspended over a patch of land that had not yet been turned into buildings. Whenever I see one of these "g-birds" I am reminded of a Wolfgang Tilmans photograph... I think taken in London... A pigeon landed on the window here yesterday. It was rather nice to be visited by a bird, even if she was definitely not visiting me... and then again this morning... around the same time... the same pigeon. I know that it was the same one, there were white feathers on the ends of her wings, like the two tone paintwork on a luxury car in the forties, rather nice and elegant... We did not have time to talk...

pretty okay...

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Was I maybe five inches away from his beak? Maybe less? Would he just snap after me if I were a bit smaller and had scales? Would he ever notice that he killed me? Or would he only notice the taste of me? Are we humans among the privileged hunters who get to experience the death of their prey outside of their bodies, completely disconnected from its probably very satisfying taste? Does this let us have wars with much of what we encounter? Is it this separation of death and food that helps us have war with other primates, or terror, drugs, or carbohydrates? If this bird was not really aware of my recording him onto a little piece of digital equipment, did this mean anything, to anybody? This bird here was a pretty capable flying machine, with the ability to just fall out of the sky and swallow various sizes of fish whole. I could never do that. I could not really survive in his environment, were I left to my own devices with no technology, no proper shelter, no fire?... I can somehow survive in the protective shell of culture and service and cashflow. Generations before me have worked so I can record a digital image of an animal that did not really have to get much better than it already is. Generations have worked on me being able to change the position of some markers somewhere on a disk in Texas, so others can see what I saw... will there be any learnings? Will we all be able to catch better fish? Yes, I have opposing thumbs and a brain that is heavier than a pelican's, but does this really make me a better species?, or only on the turf defined by other humans... the same ones who would like to sell me something in exchange for my attention, time, energy... Oh and I had a tiny piece of fish for lunch today. It was caught by somebody else and it was prepared with ingredients that might have traveled around half the globe... but I paid for it with what I was given for spending my time on a rather stressful activity that my body was definitely not optimally designed to handle... in fact... I should not work the way I work too much, as it might actually hurt me... (to the computer I am just a hand with just a few fingers clicking maybe two or three at a time... not much more...) Rather strange... He looked at me for a little while... then he had enough of me and just flew away... probably to catch some fish.

The faster birds...

Some birds are faster than others. Sometimes the speedy ones are close, but so fast that they manage quite well to get in and out of the frame, before I can press that silver button... I do not know why, but my feeling is that the seagull in the third picture was laughing at me... or was she just plain happy?... (probably neither... but I can imagine that she was, can't I?)..

speak softly...

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Woke up a bit too late and a bit too much on a Sunday. There were too many people, too few birds, too... now I am complaining too much... Back with the birds, now with some new learnings, new ways, new restrictions, new tools. They do not hate it... Did not have the courage to shoot on film today, so it was all digital. The small camera fought bravely, though it is clearly designed to make family snapshots and not really catch joyful moments with large and lazy birds. Some odd adjustments were necessary and some thinking ahead, some of the images will probably be okay... somehow... I am days away from being calm enough to think straight... or or maybe more than that... hmm... the best moments remain unrecorded...

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This page is an archive of recent entries in the Birds category.

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