One of the best things about Spring is the birds.
I went for a walk in the Don Valley this past Saturday, and it turned out to be a perfect day for birds. I saw several Baltimore Orioles (but didn’t get any decent pictures, because they sit very high up and hide behind the leaves), many Cedar Waxwings, a Great Crested Flycatcher, and the usual assortment of American Robins and Red-Winged Blackbirds.
However, even the usual assortment sometimes produces something unexpected and delightful.
As I walked between some trees and a stand of tall grass, a small bird fluttered past and landed rather clumsily on one of the stalks of grass. It appeared to be almost spherical, and rather scruffy. A quick peek through my long lens revealed that it was a fledgling Red-Winged Blackbird, who was clearly just learning to fly. He had no feathers on his head, and the feathers on his wings and tail were very short.
He sat on the stalk of grass for several seconds, apparently to catch his breath, and then started flapping his stubby little wings and squawking loudly. Daddy Blackbird came along almost immediately with food. Flying is hungry work, clearly!