Birds are usually found in the sky, which is where they like to be. But sometimes, birds can be seen in the sand, burrowing holes in the sand, moving their small wings here and there, shaking up a small sand storm.

There was a bird named Melody. She was called Melody because she sang a lovely clear ringing melody. Melody was once flying and playing between the trees with her friends Flutter and Highnote. Flutter sang always in a fluttery, wavy voice and Highnote sang with such a high voice that all the animals in the forest would hear her. Melody, Flutter and Highnote were playing tag between the trees. Melody was “it”, and Highnote kept singing in her high voice, “Melody can’t catch me, btzrrrrr, btzrrrr, Mel can’t catch me.” And it was so hot that day, even in the covered forest, under the trees, it was all Melody could do to fly to tag Flutter and Highnote – flying kept Melody cooler because she could spread her wings. But when she was just sitting on a branch in this heat, Melody would get so hot that she would wonder if her head wouldn’t pop from the sheer heat. Luckily flying made her feel better.

Eventually Melody caught Highnote, and then Highnote became “it” and flew after Melody and Flutter, singing in her high voice, “I willllllll get you!” The three birds finally tired from flying so much and playing so much tag, but the problem was that if they stopped playing and went to rest on a branch, then they would all get so hot and then become worried that their heads would pop.

But, alas, there was no choice, eventually but to slow down and rest on the branches. “Brraaiii-brraaii-brraaii, oh, what shall we do about this heat?” flittered Flutter. “Ptsi-ptsi-ptsi,” sang Melody in return, “we have to get out of the heat,” and with that she flew from the branch onto the ground which was muddy and sandy.

Melody chose a sandy spot on the ground and started to beat her wings all around her and move around in circles, making a small sand storm. Highnote and Flutter watched her from above, wondering what she was doing. Finally when the sand cleared, Highnote and Flutter could see that Melody was burrowed deep in the sand, and was calm and no longer fidgety from the heat. “Why did you do all that?” sang Highnote. “Because,” breathed out Melody, with a sigh of relief, “because it’s cool down here.…”

Flutter and Highnote immediately flew down and went through the same ritual as had Melody moments before, throwing up a small sand storm, beating their wings about, circling in the ground, until they too were comfortably seated in the sand. It turns out that sand lower than the earth’s surface stays cool longer, much longer. Melody, Highnote, and Flutter spent the rest of the afternoon singing to each other from their small cool islands in the sand.

So, you see, it is only sometimes, but sometimes we can find birds not in the sky, but in the sand.


5 Comments

  1. Posted Wednesday August 23, 2006 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Hey Lila, do birds actually do this? Hang out on the ground because it’s cooler there?

  2. Posted Wednesday August 23, 2006 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

    Fun story! I liked the description of the birds playing tag, each with their own distinctive voice! It reminded me a little bit of The Jungle Book! The feeling of waiting to be found too, and getting hot while playing hide and seek, I haven’t thought about that in a long time!

    It would be interesting if birds really did do this. I wonder what roadrunners do when they get hot?

  3. Lila
    Posted Friday August 25, 2006 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Um, no. Sparrows take dust baths to keep parasites away!

  4. Lila
    Posted Friday August 25, 2006 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    P.S. I like your reason better than the real one! I also like your birdies learning from each other.

  5. Posted Monday August 28, 2006 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    Hey Lila,
    I just saw your comments! Thanks so much! That is so cool to hear that it’s ok to play around from a real birder!

    Hi Dave, as you know, the Jungle Book is absolutely one of my favorites!

2 Trackbacks

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