Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Of happiness

One of the many joys of living in a neighborhood full of tall trees is the variety of birds I see and hear every day. Just now on our after-dinner walk I saw a bluebird fly, alight, and then take off again in a flash of brilliant color. I see hawks occasionally. The sound of woodpeckers is everywhere during the summer, and I frequently stop and peer through the branches until I spot them clinging to the tree trunks.

A couple of weeks ago, I was walking to my car in a perimeter parking lot on campus, and perched high on a dead tree I saw a large raptor with a white head. It was hard to tell with few context clues to judge relative size, but he was at least as big as the mature hawks I see around here sometimes. I stood beside my car for five minutes hoping to see him fly, but he just swayed on the tip of his leafless branch.

At least in terms of the apparent size and the white head, he was a dead ringer for a bald eagle. But we don't have those in Arkansas, I'm pretty sure. So all you naturalists out there -- what kind of bird do you think it was?


Grandma said...

Don't know what type of bird you saw, but we do have bald eagles in AR. My nephew takes pics every year of a couple who nest in the same area each year.

Doc Thelma said...

Actually, thanks to the endangered species act, bald eagles are back in places they have been absent for some time. I've seen two in my area in the last year. If there is a body of water and/or some heavily wooded areas around, eagles are a possibility.

An ornithologist at your uni could probably tell you if there are confirmed nest sites around Conway.

Donna B. said...

Wow! Thanks for the information, both of you. Wouldn't it be cool if it was actually a bald eagle!