There’s an unusual bird on your doorstep. The word “doorstep” is broadly used to mean “under your nose.” But you’re not thinking symbolically; no, this bird is on your actual doorstep. Through a glass panel, you see it poking at a worm. You can’t identify the worm, but you can identify the bird. During this stayat-home age of Covid-19, you’ve enjoyed spotting North Shore wildlife from your windows, or on neighborhood strolls. Trees and gardens around here are bird magnets. You check the internet to learn the names of birds you see, another way to keep from going nuts during the quarantine. Back to that bird on your doorstep. You slowly kneel. It’s on the other side of the glass, and you don’t want to spook it. You get a close-up view. Yellow and brown streaks. Chestnut back. An “eye stripe.” After a while, you stand, and this movement makes the Northern Water Thrush fly away. Another North Shore visitor heading into another part of the neighborhood. You’d been wanting to take a hike on one of our trails, but have been putting it off. No problem. Sometimes you go to the birds; sometimes they come to you.
This column was adapted by Mike Lubow from his book: Wild Notes: Observations over time about birds and other fleeting things. Available on amazon.com.