Draw A Bird, May 2022

This portrait of a bossy blue jay was a pleasure to paint: so calming and meditative, which is the exact opposite of a blue jay’s personality!

While they are known to be bullies at the feeders, they also “jeer” a loud call in order to track their mates and to warn of impending threats. When that happens, all the birds fly off and take cover.

Bossy Blue Jay
Bossy Blue Jay

Hearing their urgent, incessant caws gets our attention, too, and we try to figure out what all the squawking is about. Usually it is a cat or large raptor getting too close for comfort. Blue jays truly are the town criers of the avian species!

Draw A Bird, April 2022

This pert parrot is an interesting bird and can be quite a spectacle with its vibrant feathers and noisy caws.

Pert Parrot
Pert Parrot

My first experience of such a bird was when I was a young teen, and my Great-Aunt Grace’s “Polly” summered with us. Polly was a delightful bird with slightly different coloring than what a painted, and we enjoyed interacting with her and hearing her playful verbiage. While she was with us, Polly molted, and I still have one of her beautiful feathers amongst my keepsakes, as well as a reel-to-reel recording of her squawking and sayings. If only I had a player for those tapes!

That reminds me . . . Great-Aunt Grace also owned a bar with a resident mynah bird that knew some saucy phrases. Let’s save that for another post, or not! 🙂

Fancy Frog

This fancy frog is a red-eyed tree frog, native to the tropics. As with most things in nature, this frog’s festive colors serve certain purposes. Its bright colors are defense mechanisms, and being green helps this amphibian blend in with leaves. If a predator spots a sleeping frog, it swoops in for a tasty meal, at which point the frog’s eyes pop open, revealing their vivid red color.

Fancy Frog
Fancy Frog

As the frog scrambles to get away, it untucks its brightly colored legs. The predator is so surprised by these sudden flashes of color that it is momentarily confused and hesitates, which gives the frog a split second to make its escape! How fascinating!

Inquisitive Kangaroo

This up-close-and-personal kangaroo was photographed by my brother-in-law Don. I’m not sure I’d want to get so close to one, but hopefully he was using a zoom lens!

Inquisitive Kangaroo
Inquisitive Kangaroo

Kangaroos live in social groups called mobs.  Males, called boomers, are twice the size of females, called flyers. Kangaroos cover more than 20 feet in a single bound and reach speeds up to 30 miles per hour. Newborn joeys are just one inch long at birth, or about the size of a grape. Isn’t that fascinating?

Draw A Bird, March 2022

March makes me think of green because of St. Patrick’s Day, which led me to paint a green and blue peacock. Of course, a male peafowl is called a peacock, a female is called a peahen, and a baby is called a peachick.

Pretty Plumage
Pretty Plumage

Peafowl are forest birds that nest on the ground but roost in trees. Peafowl are believed to be polygamous. The males possess metatarsal spurs or “thorns” on their legs used during territorial fights with some other members of their kind.

I remember peacocks and peahens free-ranging at the Cincinnati Zoo when I was a youngster and am happy that this no longer occurs, which surely makes for less-stressed peafowl. Can you imagine how they probably were chased, fed, and “petted?” We are familiar with a local farm that has re-homed the zoo’s peafowls and are happy to learn about their gentler, quieter lives.

Shady Shark

Today’s Doodlewash prompt is ocean, which immediately brings to mind our favorite family vacation spot in North Carolina along the Atlantic Ocean coastline. One of our favorite ocean activities is beach-combing and searching for fossilized sharks’ teeth, and here is where it all begins.

Shady Shark

Although we find quite a few sharks’ teeth during our vacation, it’s been a few years since we’ve found a sizable one; you’d think it would be easy because sharks shed approximately 35,000 teeth in a lifetime! Either way, it is fun to spend time in the surf – one of my favorite places to be. 🦈 🏝

Meet Sadie

This is Sadie, a rescue that belongs to my daughter-in-law and son, which makes her my granddog 🙂

Meet Sadie
Meet Sadie

Sadie’s bark is much bigger than her bite, and although she is a large-sized pooch, she thinks she is a lap dog and loves to cuddle. I enjoyed the challenge of painting her lighter fur colors and hope Maura was happy with Sadie’s portrait for her birthday gift. Happy birthday, Maura! ❤