Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Of birds and scientist
Bro. Juniper was explaining to me how bird nests are tiny histories of the local flora, for the birds collect whatever twigs to construct their nests from the local supply, so that the nests collected a century or two ago may contain twigs from trees and shrubs that no longer grow in the area. Most of America has been invaded (or evolved?) with non-native plants since the migration of Europeans, so a nest collected in the mid-1700s may have twigs of trees that have since disappeared, well perhaps disappear is too mysterious of a term, for there is no mystery, the pioneers felled the trees to "clear" the land, to make room for farming. So while these hardy pioneers were chopping the trees down, the frantic birds were like tiny scientists, hurriedly collecting specimens before it was too late.