If you ever have the opportunity (and permits) to dissect an abandoned bird nest, you’ll discover that female birds are ingenious architects of solid, well-insulated, camouflaged homes for their eggs. They’re able to do it without practice or instruction, using found objects like rootlets, feathers, twigs and mosses.
Songbirds aren’t born with the ability to sing proper songs. Instead, they have to listen to adults in order to learn their songs, and then they need to practice. Adult females can distinguish the perfected songs of experienced males from the “baby babble” of young birds. If you listen carefully, so can you.
Taking “forest baths” and recording your observations can be wonderful therapy for modern times. Here are some tips from acclaimed natural history writer Bernd Heinrich for keeping your own nature journal.
Have you noticed how different bird species have distinct personalities?
Some are shy and skittish, while others are curious and gregarious. Don’t you wish you could get inside the head of a bird to see what makes her tick?
Depending on the species, plants either have separate sexes, like most animals, or they are bisexual. But how can you tell a plant’s sex in winter, when there are no flowers? (Hint: look to see if it has fruits.)