It’s common to associate birds with wild landscapes. But high school junior Amy Kennedy is attracted to the city birds that share her urban environment.
When most people think of city birds, they probably think of pigeons, crows and geese, birds notorious for their “bad behavior”: stealing your French fries, crowing obnoxiously in your backyard, turning your local pond into a sewage.
These birds are ubiquitous in almost every city because of their successful strategy of eating human food scraps.
But not all city birds are scavengers. Many eat berries, insects and seeds, their natural food. Though they are generally drabby-looking and on the smaller side, these are the birds that really amaze me. They are Mother Nature’s ambassadors, thriving in man-made jungles where concrete has replaced open fields, buildings have supplanted bushes, and electrical poles outnumber trees.
Black phoebes are prevalent throughout the Bay Area and are black with a white belly. I hear one outside my window almost every morning. I like to think it is telling me, “Wake up,” in its two-note dawn chorus.