Mindful Creatures

Scientists interested in cognitive ethology have begun to study learning in vertebrate and invertebrate animals, bolstered by the work of neurobiologists, who have discovered that any animal with loops between thalamus and forebrain is a conscious thinker. Birds, mammals, and reptiles all have such loops.

The Unexpected and Expected

It’s the tenth of August, and I can barely believe my ears. A wood thrush is singing two weeks later than I’ve ever heard one before. Such a wonderful, unexpected gift so late in the season when most birdsong has been replaced by the buzzing and chirping of crickets and grasshoppers. But then it is […]

The Feeders at Night

Every fall, in early November, I hang two bird feeders from our back porch latticework. One is an open, wooden platform feeder that has been batted apart at least three times by black bears and patiently repaired by my husband Bruce. That feeder is now almost 34 years old and has great sentimental value to […]