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  • Writer's pictureJenny Lynn Keller

Birds of a Feather

Do you like birds? If so, I want to give you a pileated woodpecker. Specifically, the large redheaded one drilling into the fallen pine tree right outside my bedroom window every morning. I’m talking jackhammer noise, crack of dawn, rain or shine. Just take a look at that beak, bigger than a pocket knife and evidently sharper than one too. Ever seen a Swiss cheese pine log? I have one, thanks to you-know-who.

But not all woodland birds are as large and loud as a pileated woodpecker. Most of them fit into the palm of your hand. What, you’ve never held a bird? Then let me tell you about the bird-banding sessions at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. Every summer, nature lovers of all ages are invited to help Tremont staff catch and band birds living in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I attended a recent session, and our group included as many adults as children—all enjoying an educational hands-on learning experience out in the woods. The sessions are FREE, located just a few miles inside the park boundary on the Townsend side, and a great way to spend the day with family and friends. Go as early in the morning as you can when birds are more active, then spend the afternoon doing additional fun activities in the area. Bring a lunch, plenty of water, and hike the nearby trails or play in the creek. Check out the Institute’s website for its summer schedule and plan on having a great time while learning about everything God created. Like Psalm 104:24 says, “How many are your works, O Lord! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.”

Now it’s your turn to share on this incredibly hot and muggy Southern-fried Friday. What kinds of birds are visiting your yard this summer?


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