From Steve Elsberry

When I was growing up in the late thirty’s and early forty’s there was not much bird watching being done. We had just come out of a deep depression and was in the middle of a war and people had more pressing things on their mind.

I was raised on a farm in south Georgia and I can remember walking down the lane going back to the fields with my mother and she would point out the different birds we would see and tell me all about them. We would listen to the different sounds they made. She would say ,” now that’s a mocking bird singing, it seems to be a very happy bird, constantly singing his pretty songs”, then there was the Blue Jay and he seemed to be saying, Thief, Thief. And somewhere in the grass the quail would start up with their Bob White, Bob White and I would try to imitate their call and sometimes it seemed they would answer me back.

In the spring when the birds were nesting and if we saw a nest that was low enough for us to look at it she would hold me up so I could see the different colored eggs or if the eggs had hatched see the baby birds sitting there with their mouths open waiting for mama bird to feed them. The Christmas of 1942 Santa Claus brought me the Audubon Bird Book that I still have.

I remember sitting with my mother and looking through it and picking out all the birds we saw on our trips around the farm. I didn’t realize at the time how lucky I was to have place to experience the wonders of nature and someone to point out all the good things that are all around and to teach you the need to preserve what we have and not take things for granted.
March 31, 2024 — Steve Elsberry

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