It was a busy bird morning. Two catbirds (not the ones pictured) were engaged in some sort of territorial battle, and they apparently knew the rules of engagement well.

Catbirds are noisy if you have them around, and I’m used to hearing their calls. It can be like a strange white noise. You tune it out. So the first thing I noticed was two birds circling the property over and over. Once I started paying attention, I realized there was a protocol. It started with a squawking session…two gray birds perched on branches not far from each other. Then one took off after the other, and the chasing began. Over the house to the front yard, then back again to circle around to an area just past my backyard. Some dodging and looping back there, and then back again to the front. And back again. They didn’t dive bomb or physically attack each other the way robins do, but they were persistent.

The catbirds flew under the canopy, and I wondered if they might fly into a tree trunk. With all the branches and leaves, it took some quick reflexes and agile maneuvering to avoid obstacles. A little like Top Gun.

After a few minutes, I guess they got tired, and stopped to rest. Like, “Timeout!” Again, they perched on separate branches, and started up the the dueling cat calls. A stand-off? Oh no. After a minute of squawking, they took off and it started over again. They did this over and over.

Eventually it just ended. The birds seemed okay, and neither seemed to sustain injuries. I’ve seen the robins battle, and I don’t think they quit until somebody’s feathers are ruffled.

photograph from 2014


thanks for visiting clover & ivy

9 thoughts on “the catbirds

      1. You’re probably right. Like the stronger one wins, right? One thing about birds is that whatever is going on in their lives, and sometimes it’s bad, when it gets dark, they just go to sleep. They are funny creatures. Thanks so much for taking the time to read and comment.

        Liked by 1 person

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