Photographed by Bette Jackson
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Hi, I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson, out with the wild things. For nineteenth century naturalist John Burrows who lived in New England, the return of the eastern blue bird was the first signal that spring was near at hand. He repeatedly linked the blue bird with peace and warmth. He said its voice seemed to be saying 'Bermuda, Bermuda,’ from once it may have come, though more likely his birds had wintered in the Carolinas or Florida. He also phrased its song as 'purity, purity,’ for there seemed to be absolutely nothing negative about these blue robins. The soft warble of eastern blue birds in early morning signals their arrival in the beginning of house-hunting. Unlike most other thrushes, the blue bird is a cavity nester. While the female selects the site, and is the primary architect of her nest and incubator of the eggs, the male seems ever present to offer encouragement, 'excellent, excellent,’ Burrows then heard the male sing. We may hear the blue bird’s voice in spring in Florida as well, but its fall when we see blue birds most commonly as they move south to escape winter weather. Perhaps John Burrows might have heard in the winter song the soft refrain: 'Florida, Florida'.'With the Wild Things' is produced at the Whitaker Center in the College of Arts and Sciences at Florida Gulf Coast University. For 'The Wild Things', I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson.