At the presentation that I made at Iona Prep (Lower) School this past Tuesday, I included a total of two hundred and three slides. These slides featured a number of views of nineteen different bird types who have visited my rooftop garden, as well as a few slides that showed a Red-Tailed Hawk.
She is one who kept her eyes on the comings and goings of creatures visiting my place from either the vantage point of an Ailanthus Tree in a nearby courtyard or from atop an air-conditioner that is in the window of a building which is across that courtyard (as seen in the images of my slides that are posted atop this entry).
As you can see in the first slide above, I included the common and scientific name of the hawk, which is something I did for each bird type (along with giving the students interesting facts re a given bird variety within the featured birds).
There was a student in the audience who was very good at pronouncing the Latin (scientific) names of the birds and there was also a staff member who had an interesting point upon seeing the image (below) on my slide,
of a lone Northern mockingbird in my garden.
The staff member explained that "the mockingbird was given its name because of its ability to mimic the calls of dozens of other bird species. In fact, the mockingbird's Latin name, Mimus polyglottos, means many-tongued mimic."
When observing this beautiful a Northern mockingbird, it has been my experience that this creature does more than mimic sounds: this bird is a great mimicker of behavior, which I pointed out to these students.
Prior to them seeing my slide of a Mimus polyglottos, I had shown them a number of slides which featured a female Baltimore Oriole and I'm including copies of some these slides directly below.
As you can see in four of these pictures, this Baltimore Oriole is very agile when it comes to her ability to access food from this orange feeder, however, this has not been the case for the Northern mockingbird who visits my place on a frequent basis.
But, due to his ability to mimic, which requires being observant, my visiting Mimus polyglottos was able to do a workaround:
He pulled himself over to the feeder (he could not attach himself to it as the oriole could) by perching on a "rope" that was tying my Jap. Larch (Larix Kaempferi), to a pole that's on the ledge my garden and from there he dined with great pleasure, as evidenced below.
The Baltimore Oriole and the Northern mockingbird are referenced in volumes one and two of the Words In Our Beak book series.
I had not seen the red-tailed hawk at the time these books were being written but I plan to include her as well as more info re the Baltimore Oriole and the Northern mocking bird in volume three, which will hopefully be out this fall.
Please click here to go to my blog post that provides details as to where you can get these books.