Gilley friends carve birds
large and small this fallA determined flock of Gilley members and visitors joined resident carver Steven Valleau to craft their own hanging carolina wren ornaments this November.
This shy bird can be hard to spot out in the woods, but during this one-day workshop carvers had an up-close look at the carolina wren's cinnamon plumage, white eyebrow stripe, and long, upward-cocked tail. The photo above shows Nancy Andrews working intently on her wren, while Janice Janes shows off her finished bird below.
A more extensive class is also underway now through mid-December, in which carvers are creating the much larger and very handsome whimbrel. Whether you have always wanted to try bird carving, or want a creative way to hone your identification skills, carving workshops at the Gilley enhance your artistic and naturalist talents.
|Inspiring words about birds Thank you to longtime Gilley friend and former trustee Ron Cohen for bringing to our attention a recent letter to the New York Times. Eliot Brenowitz, professor of psychology and biology at the University of Washington, wrote some stirring and thoughtful words about the beguiling creatures that caught and held Wendell Gilley's attention for so many years.|
"Birds all over the world participate in the great annual migration, finding their way over thousands of miles using a complex learned network of landmarks and star constellations...
"Crows and jays are able to innovate clever solutions to novel problems...
"Every spring, birds in our backyards construct ornate nests with whatever materials are at hand... Songbirds all over the globe learn songs from their fathers...analogous to babbling in human infants.
"Birds do all of this with brains that may be no larger than a marble. So next time someone calls you a birdbrain, thank him for the compliment."