Forgot my “real” camera this week, so these are from my cell phone. Not terrible, I guess.
This week, I could have done the Rhinocerous Auklet, but there were three beautiful magpies also waiting. I’ve been thinking about magpies in my work lately, so I sat down with one of those.
You thought they were just black and white, didn’t you? And that is one of the things I really love about them – the flashes of black and white when you see them flying, and particularly when you see them in groups. I was never quite sure exactly where the white came from. It is so lovely to see now, up close, the markings on their feathers that create those flashes in flight.
This is a Steller’s Jay that my friend Emma did. Here is another much-maligned bird that I love. Newly fledged, he flew right into the path of an oncoming car. Curing a skin with broken bones and feathers that are still growing in has its own set of challenges. My magpie was also, as Matt says, DOR (dead on road). Its wing was broken.
And someday, maybe Matt will let me stuff and sew one shut. But I can surely appreciate that he’s the pro. At this point, we’d be there until midnight, as I can only manage a flat skin in 3 1/2 hours. He did two skins in the same amount of time. A beautiful Cooper’s hawk, and one of these magpies.