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Do You Whistle At Your Birds?

Louise Linnaeus

It's six-o'clock and I hear a rattling sound outside my kitchen window. Nerve impulses from ear to brain make an instant identity match with the Baltimore oriole. He's announced his arrival at my nectar feeder, giving a few clear notes of his whistle song before taking a long drink and departing. I do a little victory dance.

Was it the bright orange feeder that brought him? Or the presence of American elm trees in my older suburban neighborhood? Maybe it's the creek nearby. Quite frankly I think it was the warm welcome I offered him as I whistled back to his early morning songs while making large sweeping hand motions in the direction of my yard, "the feeder is over here..."


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