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John James Audubon's Carolina Parrot.

Are you bird watcher? Have you seen a beautiful bird with colorful feathers in your yard? Have you watched as it sails quitely through the air out of sight? Have you watched a flock of birds follow their leader in perfect formation? Where do these birds go? Would you like to follow them home and see where and how they live?

John James Audubon was the son of a sea captain. He grew up in France and studied drawing there. When John was eighteen years old, he came to America to live. He became interested in the birds he saw here and wanted to learn all he could about them. The study of birds is called ornithology. He went out where the birds lived and boserved them so he could make watercolor paintings of the birds of America.

Audubon became famous for his many paintings of birds, showing tem in their natural homes. John used his artistic talents to show the relationships between these living creatures and their natural environments. He was an artistic ecologist.

How many birds do you see in this painting? Some show their wings. Some sit on the limb with their feathers tucked into their bodies. Are the two birds at the top talking to each other? Maybe they are sharing some secret. The bird at the botton looks as if he has just seen Audubon as he paints them.

BE AN ARTIST/ECOLOGIST

1. Go outside and find a quiet spot to sit. Be very still and quiet for a long time. Watch for birds, small animals or insects. When you see a living creature, notice what it does. Notice everything around it.

2. Choose one thing that you observed and make a picture about it. Show some special feature (shape or color, etc.) about the way the creature looks and show a special thing it does.

3. Include the special environment (bark, grass, leaves, limb, ricks, etc.) which the living creature inhabits.

4. Tell your fried about the creature in your picture. Why did you choose it? What is it doing? How does your picture show something special about ecology?

WORDS TO DISCUSS

ornithology

watercolor

environment

ecology

artistic/ecologist
COPYRIGHT 1992 Davis Publications, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Author:Niceley, H.T.
Publication:School Arts
Article Type:Biography
Date:Dec 1, 1992
Words:365
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