Saturday, November 01, 2008

a visitor

Yesterday Peter and I were fishing for striper bass in "the rips," where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean, about 3 miles off the shore of Cape May. It's migration season, and we saw a lot fo birds, mostly ducks and snow geese. Then this little yellow warbler came aboard. Above, he's sitting on the handle of my fishing pole. If he was coming from Delaware, he'd just flown 12 miles.

He walked all around the boat, and I put out a little dish of water for him.

After going all around the boat and sitting on the bow for awhile, he even came up and walked around the cockpit, while we slowly motored closer inshore. I don't know how many fishermen other than Peter would abandon fishing to taxi a songbird to shore.
Shortly after I took this picture, he flew off; we didn't see in which direction he went, to Delaware (so far) or Cape May (nearer).
This is the second time a little bird has come and rested on the boat while Peter and I were fishing. The first time, last year, we were in the ocean, at least 5 miles offshore. That bird found a spot on the canvas and rested, then worked his way around plucking bugs (I assume) out of nooks and crannies, then rested and fed, traveled on.
What is it so wondrous about a little bird; he was so frank and curious--a small representative of life's lonely and ardous journeys. I really hope he made it.

Another beautiful day for fishing today, and Peter's taking out some of the young men who work for him. So today I am hoping to get back to painting.
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Dianne said...

Hi Laura, thanks for visiting my blog and leaving the link to your blog. I love your watercolours, they are incredibly beautifully painted. I enjoyed the story of the little bird hitching a ride, these stories give others little window into your life.

Ruth said...

Interesting you posted this, as my father-in-law and I were talking about the wonders of birds, after we saw starlings flocking this morning. I had heard recently about the longest recorded flight of a bird - a godwit - that completed something like 18,000 miles in one flight. I mean, what??

These photos and the story are very sweet. I relate to birds more than other animals.

Suzanne McDermott said...

He looks so young! How nice to have such a visitor on board. I'm sure you've seen Winged Migration ( ), but, if not, definitely set aside time to watch it. 12 miles is just a hop, skip or jump for many birds. Glad you've had such nice weather for fishing.

michelle said...

four years ago i bought my husband a book on bird watching/ a pair of binoculars/ a bird house/ bird feeder and bird seed for the feeder for christmas
he opened the gifts and graciously said thank you and put it away I think puzzled as to why I would have given such a gift
1 week later he was out putting up the feeder where he could sit on the back steps and use his binoculars to watch the birds who visited his feeder
before I knew it there were several feeders and houses scattered throughout the yard and my husband started reporting on the birds that lived in our yard

we were just watching finches today hanging upside down at one of the feeders in the yard and a pair of cardinals that come to feed daily
talk about red the male is beautiful

the little guy that rested mid trip on your boat was pretty smart

birds and butterflies are amazing in the distances they travel especially over water

Mineke Reinders said...

Hi Laura, I just read this post and the one before it. It occurred to me that this little bird might have been a messenger from your beloved Carlos, telling you that he is ok... Fanciful perhaps, but a comforting thought nonetheless. I was very sorry to hear you lost your handsome cat, and I love that story about when you first took him to your vet.