Watch the birdie

I spoke a little about cameras towards the end of last year – and how a camera that did everything for you cost so much less than one that you had control over.
Well, after much consideration I bought a new camera.  I’m loving it – though I have to hide my blush when I admit that I’m letting the camera make all the decisions for me…

At the same time I bought the camera, I put up a bird table in the garden, so I would have a ready source of subject matter.  I can stand in the kitchen and watch the food disappear, and I’m having a lot of fun doing so.

There is a problem, however.  And it’s a big one.

The birds are camera shy!

Let me tell you what happened today, because it is so typical.
We were having a stew for tea, so I was in the kitchen for quite a while, peeling and chopping veg to put in the pan.  I stood at the sink, half watching what I was doing, and half watching the birds.  I kept moving about, of course, as I moved from chopping board to pan and back again – and the birds simply ignored my presence.

So I thought I’d grab a couple of photos.  I dried my hands, went into the other room and got the camera, and came back – slowly and carefully – to point the camera at an empty garden.
OK, they’ll be back – so I put the camera down in easy reach, and carried on making the stew.

Not one bird came into the garden.
Until, that is, I decided that it was silly to keep my camera in a kitchen that was filling up with steam.  I put the camera away, and went back to look at a garden full of birds.

I took the veggie trimmings out, and put them in the bin – saying hello to a blackbird as I did so.  He just sat on the path watching me, then resumed eating when I went back in the house.

So I got the camera….

After several rounds of this, I decided to try something different as an experiment.  I put the camera away, looked at all the birds, then lifted a black mug to my face.  The birds ignored it and carried on eating.

I brought a lamp in from the other room.  The birds ignored it.

No matter what I brought in, or waved in front of the window, the birds just carried on eating.  Until I had the camera – and the garden was birdless.

I don’t know how they did it, but they knew when I had the camera to hand.  I didn’t have to be holding it – it just had to be within easy reach.  If I could get the camera, there were no birds to photograph; if the camera was out of reach, the garden was full.

I had a lovely afternoon, watching all manner of birds.  Maybe someday I’ll get a photo of one.

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