Catholic Birder

Birds have had my attention for over 30 years. God for just a few. Before birds were a passion. Now they are a confirmation. Saint Francis of Assisi, patron of birds, pray for us.

November 09, 2005

Folded Shouldered Torments Tailed - Battle of the Reds

Last Saturday I enjoyed the spectacle of two hawks circling above my parents home in western Loudoun County. A red-shouldered, perhaps native to the neighborhood, dive bombed a likely-migrating red-tailed. Three generations enjoyed the viewing. Michael claimed he could see the hawks when I told him to "look above the cloud above Grandpa's house." My dad noted how much larger the red-tailed looked than the red-shouldered. He was right but the difference had more to do with what each bird was doing than their true size differential. The tailed was soaring with expansive wings and tail and the shouldered was gliding and diving with folded "shouldered" wings and closed tail. The lighting was perfect for noting the red tail and reddish shoulder of these birds.

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My little sisters, the birds, much bounden are ye unto God, your Creator, and always in every place ought ye to praise Him, for that He hath given you liberty to fly about everywhere, and hath also given you double and triple rainment; moreover He preserved your seed in the ark of Noah, that your race might not perish out of the world; still more are ye beholden to Him for the element of the air which He hath appointed for you; beyond all this, ye sow not, neither do you reap; and God feedeth you, and giveth you the streams and fountains for your drink; the mountains and valleys for your refuge and the high trees whereon to make your nests; and because ye know not how to spin or sow, God clotheth you, you and your children; wherefore your Creator loveth you much, seeing that He hath bestowed on you so many benefits; and therefore, my little sisters, beware of the sin of ingratitude, and study always to give praises unto God. Saint Francis of Assisi - c 1220

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