My favorite bird shots are not the ones that merely document beauty and say, "Look what I saw, isn't it pretty!"
I post plenty of those.
My favorite bird shots ... or any wildlife shot for that matter ... are the ones that capture a behavior, beyond sitting, soaring, or standing.
The majority of my shots fall into that "standing around" category, because most animals spend a lot of their time conserving energy.
I like them, I just get more of a thrill when I know I captured somebody doing something.
So, I was pretty happy to find this gnatcatcher busily involved in stealing silk from the webworm caterpillar nests in the black cherry tree out back.
I think I posted about this behavior last year too.
(One thing about blogging daily is you get that deja vu feeling alot as seasonal events roll around and you document them for the universe to see ... so excuse me if I repeat myself.)
Last year, I remember I had assumed the little grey birds were eating the webworm caterpillars. After standing near the cherry tree trying to get a shot, I realized they were grabbing silk, not larvae. Since it's spring and there would not be any other logical uses for the it, I assume those silk strands are being used to weave a nest together somewhere here at PFHQ.
It's that knowledge coupled with the fact that yellow billed cuckoos forage on the webworms, that stops me from tearing down all the messy, webby caterpillar nests in my wild cherry trees.
The wild cherry trees seem to take it in stride with out too much lasting damage anyway.
So, in the name of bird welfare, I get to avoid a messy chore that isn't really necessary anyway.
Works for me.