Bird watching at the Clever Hand
As winter’s grip was still holding firmly onto Clever Hand’s Wellesley home, the gallery was preparing for spring. Birds are always flitting about the gallery, a craft conservatory of sorts, and in early spring they gather here in a diverse flock, getting ready to migrate.
We decided to take stock this year and do an “official” Clever Hand Gallery bird count. We looked for birds everywhere in the store: on walls, on shelves, in the card rack, in the jewelry cases, on quilt racks, on clothes hangers, in the windows and overhead. If an object had more than one bird of the same species, such as Edie Allen’s penguin alphabet and Eli Helman’s pen and ink drawings of flying geese, we counted it as one bird. However, if a work contained more than one species, such as Kris Vezza’s mobiles, we counted each individual species in that piece. Click HERE for the full bird census.
Avian diversity at the Gallery is as strong as ever. Several familiar New England species, such as cardinals (24) and chickadees (18), were abundant and portrayed in a variety of media: photos, paintings, pottery, clothing, potholders, glass, jewelry and cards. Penguins (19), an introduced species, were also numerous. Owls were well represented (23) including the famous Clever Hand Blue Owl. Click HERE for more about them.
In addition to the large flocks mentioned above, we have a good representation of familiar birds, including blackbirds, bluebirds, blue jays, chickens, cranes, crows, woodpeckers and puffins. We also had 41 unspecific birds represented.
We have prepared an Official Clever Hand Gallery Bird Checklist for you to use in exploring the birds we have resident here in our gallery. It is available HERE and also at our front counter during spring migration. Since our population is dynamic, we can’t guarantee that they’ll all be here when you come in, but we invite everyone to see how many they can spot.
We urge you to visit one of Mass Audubon’s outstanding sanctuaries, Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary, which is just five miles down Rte. 16 from Clever Hand Gallery. It offers diverse habitats including meadows, woods, pond, brook, a large marsh, and hiking trails. Click HERE for a bird checklist and information about Broadmoor. There you can see everything from red-eyed vireos to bald eagles. You will, however, have to come to Clever Hand to find a blue owl.