The tangy but not unpleasant scent of hedge cedar tingles my nose as my head bobs up and down in search of the elusive nest. Then, suddenly, there it is, in a soft pool of light—a small grass bowl nestled expertly in the branches and filled with two tiny bodies blanketed in fuzzy down. The baby birds, sensing my presence, crane their necks weakly, raising their yawning mouths towards me. Needy peeps emit from their tiny frames. So helpless, so vulnerable, so fragile—like the bright-blue eggs they came from. I nearly forget there is a camera in my hand as I cannot help but feel as though I might sever this delicate balance of life in front of me if I make another move. Eventually, their tottering heads are too heavy to hold high and they collapse clumsily back into the nest. Slowly, almost respectfully, I raise the viewfinder to my eye. Click. Quietly I step backwards to leave the nestlings’ sanctuary in peace, pausing only to offer an apology for dashing their eager hopes of getting a tasty tidbit.
Photo: Corneil Byl