The birds are beating us

Signal 011, general


In the world before, we thought we had beaten nature. We had conquered mother earth. During lockdown, this small bird weighing just 25 grams shows us we were fooling ourselves.


This lockdown has put us all in a peculiar position. Everything about our world has changed for us. We are spending time at home, unable to travel to work or to our holiday destinations. We sit in our gardens and listen to the familiar sounds of our old world, reminding us what we want to go back to.


We can hear the garden warbler (de tuinfluiter) chirping it’s song like a pebble rolling down a hill. A familiar sound to our regular Dutch outdoors. The song of our garden. Our bird. At least, so we thought. This small inconspicuous bird, with it’s plain brown feathers, hides a reality we are all slapped in the face with during the lockdown. It may be ‘our bird’ during the summer, but soon, as the cold arrives, the bird will fly south. It travels all the way over the Strait of Gibraltar, through the Sahara desert, to arrive in it’s winter-home, Sub-Saharan Africa.


We may think we have got it all under control, that this world is ours, but this common garden warbler has beaten us the last few months. While we are unable to travel, this bird will fly to its second home during winter, blissfully unaware of anything that happens beneath its travel path. Nothing about this world has changed for them.


Image Credits

01 The Greenhouse @theladyinblu 02 @planeteelevene

03 Alchetron 04 BirdLife International


Note: image 04 displays the garden warbler's habitat. Green in summer, light blue for its journey, and dark blue for its winter home.

The garden warbler sings its song at The Greenhouse. This made us aware of our limitations during the lockdown and the impact it has on our interest in nature.


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