Before we get too far into winter, I wanted to post the photograph of Figure 1. Just after Thanksgiving I put up mu bird-feeder for the winter and literally within minutes it was swarming with birds. One of my favorite feeder birds is the little greyish blue tufted titmouse, Baeolophus bicolor, shown in the photo. I can, of course not resist reference here to Gilbert and Sulivan’s Mikado.
“On a tree by a river a little tom-tit
Sang “Willow, titwillow, titwillow”
And I said to him, “Dicky-bird, why do you sit
Singing ‘Willow, titwillow, titwillow'”
“Is it weakness of intellect, birdie?” I cried
“Or a rather tough worm in your little inside”
With a shake of his poor little head, he replied
“Oh, willow, titwillow, titwillow!”
Well, yesterday we had our first snowfall of the season and the titmice (or mouses) (I will not go into that argument again) are scurrying about very busily. Their size make them very hard to photograph well. But you have to love the little Elvis bouffant and the jet black eyes, that speak so well to their reptilian origin.
They will be outside my window all winter now flit to and from the feeder and foraging for fallen seeds in the snow. One cannot help but admire their ability to endure the vicious Northern winter.