Musings from a Sidewalk Explorer

Ms. Patti, one of our educators who has been teaching preschool and kindergarten aged children at Moose Hill for 25 years, continues her daily walks around her neighborhood and shares what she sees and a few fun activities and resources for you.

Northern Mockingbird

As I continue to take daily walks as a means to keep active and stay sane, I have noticed an abundance of Northern Mockingbirds along my route.  This slender gray and white bird with flashes of white on the wings when it flies is not shy; I saw one dive bomb a cat years ago and one did a close fly-by of my husband last week. Look for them perched on phone poles, roof tops, and sometimes hiding in the shrubs.

The Mockingbird is a mimic…and an accomplished one too. This morning I would have bet the bird singing was a White-throated Sparrow, but alas, it was the Mockingbird.

Mockingbirds have been known to mimic alarm clocks, frogs, car alarms, and other sounds, including an array of local birds. It will repeat each call two to six times, although I have noticed it is usually in sets of three. So, unless you see a flock of singing birds, it is probably a single Mockingbird. 

Find out more about this bird:

On your next exploration in your neighborhood or yard this weekend, look/listen for the Mockingbird; you don’t have to be an expert birder to identify it. 

Take a lesson from a Mockingbird:

  • randomly choose a word from the dictionary (I suggest “crepuscular” to start) and use it at least three times in a day;
  • learn to count to three (and beyond) in a new language,
  • play the mirror game where one person copies the actions of another.

And, if you want a little extra fun this weekend, why not try one of these activities as you Explore Nature at Home.

Be well and be safe!

One thought on “Musings from a Sidewalk Explorer

  1. the Wandering Chestnut Tree

    Cara Amici/Dear Friends,
    I had wanted to respond to this wonderful post last week, but was caught up in many other things….
    This is wonderful and I really love the connection here to “lessons from a Mockingbird”, because…..this past weekend I was taking a walk along the Taunton River in Somerset when a Mockingbird was singing in the bushes, very close to me, as if to say, “look up, there is something flying overhead.” Sure enough, he was right– An Osprey was gracefully flapping its wings AND clutching 1-2 sticks for nesting material, as they are perennial breeders at the old, Somerset powerplant along River Road.
    A beautiful sight, all in all, and I thank this Mockingbird for helping me be even more observant on that sunny, windy day.
    I hope that we can ALL listen (and feel) those voices in nature and become more in tune with the world around us.
    Thank you SO much again!

    Be well, be safe, stay healthy, and be strong,
    The wandering Chestnut tree


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