Red feathered bird with black featherless head

August 1, 2015

There’s a bird that’s been in my backyard of late.  It’s really bright red on the body — looks like a cardinal — but its head is completely black and looks featherless from what I can see — I am reminded in some ways of a very small and very red-bodied vulture.  Don’t know what to make of him, but he seems to be doing okay, finding stuff to eat on my patio, flying around with things in his mouth.

On the subject of interesting wildlife observations:  I saw a very small rabbit chasing s grackle and then later calmly munching clover while a bunch of grackles pecked nearby on the lawn.  Weeks ago I saw what I think was this same small rabbit being chased by a very frenetic chipmunk, who I think lives in the back retaining wall — I wondered if he (?) was being territorial.

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3 Responses to “Red feathered bird with black featherless head”

  1. Matthew Says:

    Last week I ran over a raccoon driving home from my sister’s house. Tonight I was driving a Uhaul through the streets of Colorado Springs and I narrowly missed a raccoon couple. My wife was driving behind me and she avoided them too.

    I was thinking how, since everything in the universe is determined, whether the raccoon I hit last week had a death wish, and these 2 raccoons must not have had. Maybe that’s ascribing more to the universe than there is, but it’s an idea anyway (ie. things don’t just happen to us; we are happening to things too).

    Red and black are ominous colors; see aposematism. They’re warning colors of prey (ie. a prey animal (objectifiable, as such (appearance being one facet of objectification)), but one that would be ostensible unpleasant (costly) to prey upon). I’ve noticed a lot of black men wearing red and black (from head to toe, in many cases) these days. A lot of black women have taken to dying their hair red, which accomplishes the same feat, round about.

    And then Michelle Obama wore what appears to have been a “black widow” dress on election night 2008. I watched the event live and I immediately grasped the visual signal and the implications, and I nearly fell out of my chair. You can consult some of the various articles from that night and you’ll see dozens of people came to the same conclusion. I can’t imagine it was a message sent by accident, and the implications are ominous indeed.

    • Diana Moses Says:

      A raccoon died beneath an ornamental cherry tree in our yard a few weeks ago or so. The animal turned out to be wedged between the tree and the fence and Jordan couldn’t get it out by himself. He didn’t want me to have to see it, so he got someone else to help him remove it. It was apparently a young raccoon, which makes one tend to wonder more about what led to its death. I am trying to think of a shared vocabulary for expressing how I can look at it: manifestation of an energy stream playing out? Such an energy stream may be old, may have played out with other details in past iterations, we in the present get included in it as if we had stepped into a rain shower together.

      Black and red remind me of sports team colors — I thought that was one way they became a popular way to dress. While Michelle Obama’s clothing choices may have symbolic significance, I dislike the attitude and animus most of the critiques of her clothing seem to have, so I am hesitant to join in the discussion — I sense an agenda I probably don’t want to contribute to.

      • Matthew Says:

        “Some are born to sweet delight, some are born to endless night”…

        Regarding Michelle Obama’s dress, if you read the comments you will notice the reaction to the symbolism is largely apolitical. Many administration supporters expressed concern; I’m thinking of the comments on the Huffington Post, the New York Times, and the LA Times, all decidedly Democrat-friendly.

        Fashion is not the point. It’s addressing the significance of the “black widow” design and its implications.


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