an ornithological look at the castro

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The Castro is a lovely neighborhood, full of nice people, fine restaurants, a plentiful array of bars and clubs, coffee shops, and at least twenty different stores that sell lube. As a straight man living in the Castro, I like it, but feel that I'm not properly taking advantage of all it has to offer. It's like being Muslim, and living in a great neighborhood where all of the stores are made out of pork.

Recently, I have noticed that the Castro is also home to a wide variety of avian life. These birds may be indigenous to the Castro, or they may have moved to the area to find a safe, tolerant neighborhood with birds of the same persuasion. That particular persuasion seems to involve screeching, all the time, but particularly at night. With help from the Audubon Society, I have categorized some of the fowl that inhabit the trees of my fair neighborhood.

The Yipporwill: Named after the "Yip yip yip yip yip yip yip yip yip yip" sound it makes, this bird can be found in a tree that is twenty-five feet away from my front door. It doesn't travel much, preferring to stay in its tree and sing at the top of its tiny yipporill lungs from 10 PM until sunrise.

The Throated Viper: As a survival mechanism, this bird has developed an uncanny ability to imitate the natural sounds of its environment. The throated viper mimics the call of the Viper 160XV Deluxe alarm system, from its ear-shattering klaxon call to its throbbing two-note sonata of warning. During mating system, disoriented throated vipers can be seen amorously descending upon burglarized parked cars in search of a mate, and then shitting on them. Mostly, the throated viper is content to sit in a tree near my house and sing all night.

The Bear Pigeon: Like a regular pigeon, only heavily-feathered and extremely fat. Popular with chubby-chasing birds of prey.

The Screaming Scream Gull: Possibly a native of a loud, ocean habitat, the screaming scream gull is a nocturnal beast. This particular species of scream gull stands out from its scream gull brethren due to its notably loud and resonant scream. There is a thriving community of screaming scream gulls about half a block away from my apartment.

The Succubus Sparrow: Perhaps the loudest of all Castro birds, it is unknown whether the nocturnal succubus sparrow actually eats food. Some ornithologists posit that the succubus sparrow sustains itself solely by energy drawn from human insomnia.

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I, too, have been noticing the incredible volume of these rare nocturnal birds. The first night I heard them, there was also a violent-sounding catfight. Tonight's quiet leads me to believe that broadcasting their location all night, every night, was not good for survival. Oh no, there they go.

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Keane published on May 3, 2006 10:12 PM.

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