Of course, I hear the joyful songs of mockingbirds nearly every day in my Decatur neighborhood, but this individual in a parking lot seemed exceptionally talented. If there were such a thing as an “American Idol” competition among birds, he’d surely be a winner.
The late Georgia ornithologist Thomas Burleigh had perhaps an explanation of why some mockingbirds seem more adept at performing songs than others: “An occasional individual appears far more skilled in this pastime than others — probably an older bird that has developed its technique over a period of years.”
A mockingbird‘s own song, Burleigh noted, is vigorous and attractive, “but (the bird’s) fame is justifiably based on its apparent delight in imitating perfect the songs of other birds.”
IN THE SKY: From David Dundee, Tellus Science Museum astronomer: The moon will "grow" next week to first quarter by the weekend. Venus is low in the west just after dark and sets less than an hour later — and will appear near the moon Saturday night. Mars rises in the east about four hours before dawn. Jupiter and Saturn rise in the east just before midnight. Mercury is not visible right now.