Disappearing Animals: 50 Shades of Brown

A thick fog enveloped Manhattan this morning, rolling over Broadway and wrapping the water towers in a ghostly shroud.

Water tower in the mist.

Water towers in the mist.

By late morning, when the dog and I descended the steps into Riverside Park, the fog had lifted.

Brown was the color of the day. Or rather 50 shades of brown.

50 shades of brown.

50 shades of brown.

The park was full of beautifully camouflaged small animals. These trees, for example, were full of unseen birds. I know, because I heard them.

Invisible birds fill the air with song.

Invisible birds fill the air with song.

And this tree, too, received a sudden gust of sparrows that disappeared swiftly into its branches.

Sparrows disappear into the branches.

Sparrows disappear into the branches.

Here is one, now.

Sparrow like a flying leaf.

Sparrow like a chirping leaf.

Squirrels, too, disappear amid dead leaves, bare branches, and gray retaining wall.

The white of the tail gives this squirrel away.

The white of the tail gives this squirrel away.

From a small ledge high on the mossy retaining wall, a squirrel looks out over Riverside Park.

From a distance, he disappears.

From a distance, he almost disappears.

Zooming in, he looks like a tiny fat potentate surveying his kingdom.

Rodentine potentate.

Rodentine potentate.

Perhaps he is gazing out at the river. As I discover anew each fall, bare branches make for fine river views.

Sunset over the Hudson

Sunset over the Hudson

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Explore posts in the same categories: 2012, Birds, Fall, In the City, Seasons, Squirrels, Wildlife/Natural History

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6 Comments on “Disappearing Animals: 50 Shades of Brown”

  1. Mr. Mantooth Says:

    The photos of 50 Shades of Brown have a Chekhovian feel. Is this what Masha, Irina & Olga saw?

  2. p hoey Says:

    A meditative approach to a stripped-down landscape. Lovely!

  3. Charlotte Says:

    there’s a play in there, King Rodentine and his three sparrows!


  4. Love the little potentate! But have you noticed that grey squirrels always look a bit unfocused? I sometimes wonder if they are short-sighted – although that would be a bit strange when they spend their lives leaping off trees into space…


  5. Love the look of veiled secrecy of your 50 shades! What a fabulously posh title for the furry fella,The Rodentine Potentate!


  6. There is a hedge of deciduous shrubs by my apartment that always catches my attention for the noise that comes from it, a cacophony of chirps from house sparrows. I’m always amazed how difficult it is to find the birds that are making all that sound even though I stand only 1 foot away!

    P.S. The squirrel looks like a little Buddha to me!


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