Field Trip!: Visit to the National Aviary


It's the Fourth of July weekend, and what could be more appropriate than spending some quality time with Uncle Sam and, er, Aunt Samantha up there-- a couple of real-and-for-true American bald eagles?

As you may know, I had my friend Josette, who I've known since grade school, visiting these last few days, and I always like to try to take her to some of the unique things Pittsburgh has to offer. This year was a trip to our National Aviary. So I figured folks who like to feather their nests might also enjoy seeing how a few of our winged friends do the same. Just as a change of pace, donchaknow.

Then Wednesday I'll take you with us as we go antiquing in Eastern Ohio.

Regarding America's befeathered icon, the Aviary had three, with these two having a tete-a-tete in a large enclosure. This would be my first time getting a chance to see these noble birds in real life. There's an innate expression of firm intelligence that marks that bird's face...

...Reminds me a little of one of my former college professors!

Some macaws were also very happy to pose for the camera. In fact, this hyacinth macaw spent a bit of time nodding in enthusiastic agreement at my friend Scoobie, who'd joined us on this journey. The macaw either really liked Scoobie, or could see his reflection in her glasses and realized he was indeed a very pretty bird.


Hyacinth's red-and-green counterpart was equally fascinated, though a bit more shy...


Lovely plumage!

And here's another one of our feathered friends-- I couldn't track down what this fellow was-- but he was getting a bit territorial with that "other bird" reflected in the glass doors that separated bird habitats. You can see him here challenging that fellow in the mirror...


One of the nice things about the way the aviary was set up, was there were plenty of opportunities for interaction. There were birds on the ground at our feet...


In the trees....


In the water....



And even in the rafters, like these scarlet ibis...



And with that, and at risk of you all giving ME the bird for having such a short post today, I must fly away now.

If you missed last week's Treasure Box Wednesday post, click here.

And otherwise, I hope to see you this coming Wednesday as Josette, Scoobie and I go Ohio antiquing or bust!

PS-- For anyone curious why my one friend has been nicknamed Scoobie...


There's a minor Scooby-doo collecting compulsion. These were just her winnings from the Dave & Busters arcade! Zoinks!

Have a great start to your week, my friends.

14 comments:

Claire said...

Can I ask why its called a National Aviary? Is it government funded or something like that?

I am relieved that Scoobie is called Scoobie because she likes Scoobie and not because she looks like Scoobie :)

I am sure your have more than one friend :)

ThriftShopRomantic said...

Heya, Claire- It has national honorary status apparently due to its conservation work in assisting rare breeds of birds.

Scoobie discovered somewhere in the 90s how nostalgic she was about Scooby-Doo... It was a surprise to everyone. Amusingly, many of her coworkers also call her Scoobie, due to the various Scooby-Doos that sit in her office.

I have unusual friends. :)

Claire said...

Pretty sure the other bird is a red billed curassow, which makes sense as its an endangered species and that goes with the conservation status of that place.

I am afraid Scooby Doo is in that category of cartoons that Bugs Bunny is, but I am sure she is lovely :P

Claire said...

Okay I am sad, it is in fact the Wattled Curassow :)

Claire said...

What do I win!

Jenn Thorson said...

Claire- Win, hm.... The expression of shock on my face as you came up with the name of that bird? :) These wattled curassows aren't just flapping around England... how precisely it is that you are so bird-savvy?? :)

Da Old Man said...

Great pictures, Jenn. I'm amazed they allow nature to just wander about willy-nilly, though. Looking forward to your finds from antiquing in Ohio.

Jenn Thorson said...

DaOldMan- In the case of the eagles, they were behind glass. Others were behind fencing, but those shots didn't turn out as effectively. And then there were the willy-nilly bird areas... which was fun, though, we never quite knew what was going to happen. I did think of you and your interaction with Nature. :)

Claire said...

The dad is a twitcher :)

Also from my days in university studying ecology.

Jenn Thorson said...

Claire- AH! It all makes sense now.

It was challenging in the open rooms here at the aviary to see a bird and then associate it with the proper plaque. The plaques with the bird's picture and info on it were scattered all around, so it wasn't the easiest matching game, and I didn't get all the info I'd hoped, as a result of it.

Claire said...

From the age of three I had my own binoculars, whether I wanted them or not :)

I hated it when I was younger, but now I love going to the zoo and nature in general.

Lois said...

I spent most of this past Saturday at a local park watching blue heron fishing for food. (at least I think it was a blue heron - it was definitely a heron and it was definitely blue) I have never been that close to one before and I enjoyed watching it very much. I like watching birds but I am not a true birder-I'm not that dedicated.
Thanks for sharing your pictures. It's great that you’re having a good holiday with your friend.

Jenn Thorson said...

Lois- It does certainly sound like a blue heron. It's always funny to watch them trying to sneak up on fishermen to steal the fish from their buckets. Something that tall and big just CAN'T be truly stealthy. But there's no telling the herons that.

ankur said...

seem like you had some nice time . I love macaws though.


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