Breath Of Ecology

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It's pretty lonely out in the garden these days.


Up until a few weeks ago I had lots of company with our martins, wrens, and others flying in and out of their houses, sitting on the telephone wires, and pecking in the grass all around me. I loved it.


Nowadays, a cardinal or mocking bird might stop by, but migration time has arrived, and  most of the others are on their way down to South America now, heading for a warmer climate; the smaller ones traveling at night to avoid predators. 


This annual event of migration takes preparation. The birds gorge themselves with food to prepare for as much as over a thousand miles of flight, traveling an average of 30 mph., losing weight along the way.


Many are lost during their flight because of hunters, crashing into windows, and discovering that their usual wooded resting places that have provided food along way are now shopping malls and housing developments.


Those traveling during the night depend on the stars to guide them, but the many lights of cities can send them off course.


It's really amazing how many actually reach their southern destinations and return to their homes in the spring to start their new families while enjoying the warm climate of North America again.


May we all come to appreciate the beauty, the instincts, and difficulties of these little feathered creatures, and the joy that their presence brings us.


Written by:  Sr. Joel:  a Dominican Sister of Peace who lives in Springfield, KY.  She is a native of New Orleans  and has been a teacher, school and parish administrator, social worker, religious educator, and missionary.  She has written "Breath of Ecology" for local newspapers and has published a book under the same title.

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