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At the feeder outside my window a bluebird has brought its fledgling to learn to forage for itself. The kid, perched by a bounty of safflower and peanut, is cheeping from its yellow-bordered maw, while the parent patiently pecks seeds from the bin and puts them in the little mouth.

This kind of thing happens now and again in late spring, and it is one of my favorite sights in all of nature. Because it makes me feel, as a parent, so much less alone.