I‘ve been extremely impressed by the difference of fauna between the old and new continent. The very first months living here, I saw bird species I didn’t recognize: seeing for example, the very first bluejay had me startled, since I had not seen it before, I couldn’t give it a name. The pictures on that Wikipedia page don’t do the bird honour: they’re actually quite large.

The other bird I didn’t fully recognize were starlings: There were always plenty of them hopping around in the yard and initially, they reminded me of the other typical bird I’ve seen during my younger years (‘merels’ (warning Dutch)) with one main difference: My first impression was that these starlings were ‘Merels on Extreme-Weight-Control’. And thinking of it, that’s an excellent name for a a reality show.

However, recently I discovered that there’s a proper Dutch name for these birds: We call them ‘spreeuwen’, which, rings a bell, but not as much. They’re considered migrating birds in Europe, which may explain why I initially didn’t recognize them.

I hear that there are Cardinals around: At least I’d know what to call them.

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