A soft trill from a hiding spot. A rambunctious symphony of caws. A pocket of color in the brown-green tree tops. A screech from high in the sky. A chirping song ringing out above you.

Expertly hidden in trees are marvels of nature that have co-habituated with humans for centuries, yet we humans only understand so much about birds. Birds are so different from other creatures we know so well. We understand dogs, cats and hamsters. But birds?

That mystery is what in part makes discovering birds a delight, as well as because of how rare a sighting can be.

A bird's nature piques the natural curiousity within us, and soon it becomes a personal challenge to sight as many birds as possible. Soon you end up wondering what bird is singing outside your window. Or what bird swooped above you. What was the bright yellow bird you caught a brief glimpse of?

Once a birdwatcher, always a birdwatcher

Photos by Kelly Colgan Azar

Living in Gainesville as a birdwatcher is a gem in itself. The city of Gainesville features many parks beautifully integrated into the city. Even the University of Floria campus allows for students to see these creatures.

You may be coming to this page with an empty nest -- little or no knowledge of birds -- but with a few tips, you will be on your way to being a birdwatcher.

Are you ready to fill up your nest?

Shape by Carolhue on ColourLovers.com