I have come to love trees. The admiration was always there, climbing to perilous heights as a child and perched up high, singing to them, the birds, and the sky. In adult years when I was no longer a climber, I watch others go up into tropical trees to see what secrets their cavities held. Chicks would be temporarily lowered, so marvelous, and when they were not present or too deep to reach, a camera that had captured the essence of life in trees would come down for my eyes to behold. It’s hard to stay on the ground when so much of what happens in trees is “up.”
It was even harder this year when our field vehicle broke down and I couldn’t even go to help climb trees or examine chicks, let alone first hand touch the trees and crane my neck upward. Instead I waited, not so patiently, back at the research station for the data forms and camera to come to me. With more time on my hands than usual (which is to say I wasn’t running flat out all day and up to all hours processing samples and interpreting data sheets) I actually finished reading a book – The Secret Life of Trees. A world of wonder opened up for me, so that when the photos were viewed, or when I did the nest observations that I could walk to, I became mesmerized with trees.