After three years of living in a neighborhood without a publicly accessible patch of grass, it’s a delight to be able to trek ten minutes to 413 acres of trees. Sarah and I have been taking weekend walks to “The Water Hole” in Forest Park’s east end, a popular haunt of Queens’s avian set. There peckish passerines can find seed and suet feeders under the cover of mature oaks. We’ve seen a lot of activity, including overwintering pine warblers and ruby-crowned kinglets.
One of my favorite sightings was a particularly waggish white-breasted nuthatch. I snapped a picture of it suspended from a single foot, its hallux sunk into bark like a climbing axe.
Here it is again, in a more cautious pose, its red rump and powerful back toes exposed to the camera.
I was hoping to bird again this weekend, but with forecasted temperatures hovering above zero, I think I will be content to sit inside, snug with my cat, watching whatever alights on the wires outside the window.