Like a biblical plague, a cackle of grackles descended upon my yard.
The term ‘cackle’ comes from the sound the birds make. (Then why is a group of crows called a murder? I’ve never heard a crow shout “Off with her head!”) Anyway, besides cackling, grackles whistle, squeak, pop, creak, and croak. Obviously the choices for the ‘flock’ name were endless but the powers that be went with cackle. I would have liked calling it a ‘pop’ of grackles, but nobody consulted me.
Even though they don’t have a pretty call, grackles are stunning birds, with sleak black bodies, irredescent blue hoods and gorgeous fan-shaped tails. However, it’s their yellow eyes that give them an intese appearance.
The bravado pirates of the bird world, cackles will descend, consume whatever food they can get their becks on, intimidate the other birds, then move on to terrorize the next feeding location.
Within an hour, there wasn’t a speck of suet left!
According to Cornell Lab of Ornathology, a cackle will peck clean corn fields and are a danger to corn crops. The Cornell website also states grackles will ‘dominate’ other birds at feeders. I didn’t see any whips or chains, but I did hear one singing Rihanna’s song.
Life on the Concord River is anything but dull. Blessed be. :]