Saturday, August 13, 2016

Academic Reading

What title can you give to the text?
The name of the family to which the Redstart belongs needs, perhaps, a word of explanation. It simply means that our Warblers are related to a family of European birds which have well earned their name, since the family includes the Nightingale and one or two other birds almost as musical. The name Redstart, too, is English,—start coming from the Anglo-Saxon word for tail. It was applied in England to a bird with a red tail, and since our bird has bright color in the tail, the name was transferred to it by the English settlers.
Many of the Warblers frequent the thick woods and are little noticed; the Redstart, however, often builds in the trees or shrubbery about the house, particularly if a brook or pool afford an abundance of insects. In the crotch of a sapling or on a limb, the female places a pretty nest built of bark and soft materials. The female resembles the male in the pattern of color, but the black is replaced by gray, and the orange by a faint yellowish shade. Males only one year old resemble the female so closely that the sharp little song often seems to proceed from the bill of a female; in reality it is a young male that is singing, one not yet arrived at the full splendor of his future gay plumage.
The Redstart is often victimized by the Cowbird, and one feels the imposition more keenly in its case than in that of almost any other bird, for we know that the big clumsy Cowbird is being reared at the expense of a whole family of these pretty warblers.
The Redstart comes early in May and stays through the summer. Some are seen even as late as October, but these are, very likely, birds which have bred far North, where the late summer did not permit them to rear their young so early as our own birds.

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