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The Supporting Cast
April 23, 2018

Could It Be?

Is it possible that Spring is finally here?

(Cardinal in snow was taken last week Monday, the daffodils on Tuesday.)

I must say this these past few days (temperature wise), have been long overdue.

How wonderful to have a few windows open, and I could
put out the wind chimes.

Miss Penny and Sophie, like all true cats, sit on the windowsill, enjoying the fresh air and the movement of all the birds.

Snickers and Keet (Akita), enjoy a sunbath outside too.

Now, I'm several weeks behind on outdoor tasks.

I will have to see what gets ignored or not.

My brother's tumor has a name, or so it seems.

"Retroperitioneal Fibrosis", a rare disease that can lead to serious issues.

All you prayers are appreciated.

All prayers are welcome.

The Stars and Supporting Cast:

John Wayne, Doris Day.

Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers.

Lebron, Steff.

Bryce Harper, Jose Altuve.

Wayne Gretzky, Gordie Howe.

Superstars in their fields.

The ones that make some serious cash.

The stars that people pay good money to see.

To be entertained.

Still, with all of the talent listed, they all need, and needed a supporting cast around them.

The same is true with nature.

Stars and Supporting Cast:

The Stars and Superstars:

The Stars of Spring Migration are always a familiar cast.

Many of us look forward to the first American Robin of spring.

If you run a 'Purple Martin Hotel', you always look for the first birds to arrive.

Avid Blue birders with the first signs of nest activity in the boxes, and the vigilance needed to keep them safe from marauders.

The arrival of Orioles.

In most locations, hummingbirds have superstar status.

For me, Robins are the Harbingers of Spring, though the Red-wing blackbirds arrive a few days before.

Red-wing blackbirds become more of a pest as their numbers increase.

I look forward to the arrival of Tree Swallows in early April.

The non-stop motion of these little birds, and the flying skills bring a smile to my face.

Orioles, I usually hear them before I see them.

The tropical colors and song liven up any day.

Hummingbirds, the flying jewel of any garden.

In Michigan, the Ruby-throated hummingbird is our only hummer (this holds true for most of us east of the Mississippi River).

In my part of the world, they can make their first visit anytime between May 1 and May 14.

I think hummers are one of the few Stars that most people stop to watch and enjoy, I know I do.

One year, Green Herons had Superstar status as they build a nest and raised three youngsters for us to enjoy.

We cab't forget the Monarch Butterfly as a Superstar
(especially these past few years).

The Supporting Cast:

(Fledged Green Herons in my yard a few years ago.)

There is always fans of the role player, no matter what.

The same with birds.

You may be a super fan of Warblers, Meadowlarks, or another species that migrate.

House wrens and Vireos have star status with some.

If you live in the west, Western Bluebirds, or Mountain Bluebirds may be your stars, the ones you look forward to every year.

There are so many birds that are roll players in the whole mix we call migration.

Birds that add so much to the sight and sounds that fill our yards, woods, and parks.

Visitors for a season or two before they return to their winter homes.

Again, their are birds that play a major roll, but not stars.

Then there are birds that are simply passing through.

White-throated sparrows, Fox-Sparrows, even some warblers will visit for a day or two.

Sandhill cranes as they fly over become a roll player

Birds you may never see if if you don't have your eyes and ears open.

They may stay a few days or a couple of weeks before they move on.

Yes, Several species of birds pass through Michigan and other northern regions to breeding grounds in parts of Northern Canada.

(Rose Breasted Grosbeaks sharing the feeder last spring.)

Soon the Juncos and Tree sparrows will be gone.

Their song will be replaced the the Song Sparrow.

Killdeer, Grosbeaks, Buntings, Yellow-headed Blackbirds, and others will play a roll throughout the season.

The flit of a Brown thrasher is spotted, a bashful Catbird cries out.

Eastern meadowlarks have dwindled in numbers, as have many species.

(I once looked forward to the sight and sound of these beauties.)

The regular cast of supporting characters.

The bit players that show up most years.

And the cast of regulars like Jays, Goldfinches, Chickadees, Woodpeckers, Cardinals, House-Finches, Titmice, and many more.

(Around here, Cardinals and Chickadees have year round star power.)

(White-Throated Sparrow in my yard a couple days ago.)

Without the regulars, supporting cast, and roll players, the Superstar is just there.

Would we know how great a Bryce Harper, or Larry Fitzgerald is without the cast?

A supporting cast is generally needed.

Behind the stage.

Grounds keepers.

The orchestra.


Doctors and managers.

The list goes on.

We may notice and give acclaims to the stars, without the supporting cast, they aren't much.

The same goes for all of nature.

It is the stars and the roll players, when all come together like God intended, make up a masterpiece that takes your breath away.

(Fox-Sparrow in my yard this Past week, a few of these birds have been hanging around for almost two weeks.)

Next time you see or hear one of your star players, pause to appreciate the surrounding cast.

Even if it is the tree your favorites hang out in.

Well, it is time to fly for now.

Before I go, here is your positive thought for the week.

God Bless.

"If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything".

Read that again.

Now think about that for a moment.

From God's word.

" Enemies disguise themselves with their lips, but in their hearts they harbor deceit."

"Treat the earth well:

It was not given to you by your parents,

It was loaned to you by your children.

We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors,

We borrow it from our Children."

Ancient Indian Proverb.

A Blessed week to you .

Your friend indeed,

Ron Patterson

PS. If you enjoy these letters, please forward them to friends, family and co-workers.

Better yet, have them sign up so they can receive their own letters.

Gardening For Wildlife.

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