Tuesday, September 2, 2014

My Father-in-law and Bob White

My father-in-law is a polite man. From time to time, I forget that not everyone else is interested in my latest bird find, and I'm pretty sure there have been occasions where I've bored him by pointing out a bird or two while our family joins them on their regular neighbourhood walks when we visit. He usually politely nods, shows polite interest, and then politely changes the topic.  I don't blame him. It's not that he doesn't enjoy seeing the nature around him - his more concentrated interests lay elsewhere.

But he surprised me the other day with a phone call, and after getting through the polite niceties that starting a phone call requires, he had a question... about a bird they were seeing regularly around the yard! I honestly thought he was taking a moment to poke fun at me a bit, but no, he had details of shape, size, where they were seeing it, what it's call sounded like.  And he did a good job of describing the bird, because I quickly had a guess.  My response with additional corresponding details clinched it, and for sure, they were enjoying a rather uncommon sighting of a Northern Bobwhite!

Northern Bobwhite

Apparently this bird has become quite the local, interest for the neighbourhood.  Although not tame (there's question as to whether it could have been a pet), it surely isn't shy either, even to the point of chasing smaller children in the backyard.

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Well, I finally had to make my way out to Grimsby to visit and try and see Mr. White given he was regularly being seen on a daily basis and it's characteristic call made it easy to track down in it's pretty predictable territory of a neighbourhood block or so.  I headed out really early from home before work and before long, heard the clear notes of the plump little bird.  My mother-in-law had given me tips on where it had been seen last, and her helpful tips were correct.  It was perched on a fence preening and calling regularly in the bright morning sun.

Preening Northern Bobwhite

Not the most natural of perches for pictures, but I was glad for the morning light to show off the beautiful plumage of this bird.  So far as I know, Northern Bobwhites are not typically an urban bird, so this regular appearance is a bit strange.

Northern Bobwhite

Up until somewhat recently, I understand the bird is still there... It has been seen mostly on the eastern blocks off of Balharbour Drive in Grimsby. If you have a bird app, all it will probably take is one call from your bird app to get a response.

Till next time...
Keep enjoying His handiwork!