Here is the Crying Bird, and two species of Spanish Curlews, from our faithful observer and documenter William Bartram…
Ephouskyca and Tarzan!
The Florida Limpkin no longer flies in great groups about the San Juan River in Florida. Its primary food source has diminished, apple snails. So William Bartram’s Crying Bird struggles to survive. A rather lack-luster bird, the most extraordinary thing about it, it’s cry. So thus the Native Americans named it Ephouskyca, or Crying Bird, for its distinctive cry. According to my guide on the San Juan River, Captain Gary of Blue Heron River Tours, that cry made it into Tarzan, as a sound of wild Africa, but the Limpkin’s voice is actually a sound of wild Florida.
Juveniles and Adults
The two species of Spanish Curlews are actually one species, juveniles and adults, of the White Ibis. The juveniles are brown, as they grow older more and more feathers turn white.
Pensive, Melancholy, Wood Pelican…
Bartram’s description of the Wood Pelican, or Wood Stork as it is now called, is dead on. A very solitary and melancholy bird, we saw only one on my week of journeys down the San Juan. An endangered species, in some protected areas making a come-back of sorts however.
The Pleasures of Solitude
I can relate to a point to the Wood Stork, in that I like to be solitary. But for me, being solitary is about connecting to inspiration, connecting to Source Energy, and myself. My times of solitude center and balance me, so that I can move with grace when I connect to the greater world about me. Not that I don’t think deep thoughts when alone, sometimes I do, other times I think happy ones.
My Favorite Thing!*
Lately I have been practicing thinking like a dog—My Favorite Thing! Getting to write this blog post—My Favorite Thing! I got pumped up after an inspiring call last night, and took pictures of myself with sparklers—My Favorite Thing! While I was completely alone (except for Luna, my dog—My Favorite Thing!) these pictures are more about connection and joy and play and awe—My Favorite Thing!, than the Wood Pelican’s melancholy pensiveness—My Favorite Thing! Enjoy! My Favorite Thing!* Opening Stanza of reading from “The Slacks” by Trip Shakespeare. Limpkin and Wood Stork Calls from The Florida Museum of Natural History. White Ibis Calls from Xeno-Canto. Idea to think like a dog from The Awe-Manac by Jill Bodinsky.