Wooden fence posts are going the way of the Dodo Bird…They are disappearing fast. No farmer in his right mind puts in cedar posts anymore…Too much work and they don’t last as long as steel posts from Farm & Fleet. Or do they? This Savannah Sparrow is singing from the top of a very old post. How old? 75 years? 100 years? Lichens encrust the weathered soldier. Wind, rain, hail, snow, bitter cold, ice have all taken a bit of life out of the post. But from a photographer’s aesthetic, the post is perfect. A photo of the same bird—same light, same position, same behavior—on a green steel fence post probably would have been deleted. I seek out fields fenced with wooden posts…Ones that are close to the road so I can ease up on a singing Savannah Sparrow, Western Meadowlark, Upland Sandpiper and get a shot. This sparrow actually allowed me to approach on foot and get a few handheld shots before splitting.

Look for the yellow lores on this grassland species. Its song is a rather loud “tic…tic…zheeeeeee..zhoo” It is common in hayfields, prairies and other grasslands more than a few acres across the continent.

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