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Something to Listen For--

A recent article in a local newsletter* pointed out something we all tend to miss, to the peril of our birds, namely the decline of crickets and katydids and ciccadas as suburban sprawl moves "slowly and surely into natural areas," and the birds that depend upon them lose their food.

"A nearly universal sign of summer is the songs {for love and territory} of insects filling the air," particularly on warm summer nights in fields and woodlands. Listen for them. Were they there this summer?

"Understanding can change attitudes {and eliminate pesticides and destruction of habitat}. With the proper perspective, even insects can be lovable. The next time you hear the members of an insect symphony warming up for their very own version of the 'Ode to Joy,' give thanks that you can still live in a place where their music fills the night."

The birds do.

*Jane Crowley, Editor, Wild Bird News, St. Louis Edition,"Insect Symphonies -- Healthy Signs of Summer", July/August 2001, Vol.XV, No.4.

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