3 2 THE CONDOR VOL. VI his straw basket of eggs, he'll call "Here it is ! Here it is !" and a minute later he'll screech the same lie from another tussock ten yards away. Why Nature put that jet black mask across his countenance is more than I can guess, unless it was to enable him to sing his falsehoods without a blush. His wife must be a model for she goes about gossiping without the sign of a veil. It's the Turkish custom reversed. I never know just when yellow-throat is going to depart in the fall or just when he will return in the spring. I have never seen him going away or coming back. You may hear him one day and find your garden tenantless the following. Then, after a long silence, you wake up some morning and find he's there again, as if he had grown out of the ground during the night, like a toad-stool. After his return in the spring it's never long before he is scratching out a pit in a dry grass- bunch to line with bark strips and shreds. No, for all my trouble I didn't find the nest and eggs, though I beseiged the swampy patch a dozen times. But one day as I skirted [ the edge of the garden, a streak of yellow darted from under my ? feet. She was brood- ing a basket of naked ' nestlings. Then I laid seige, not too close at first. I trained my camera on the most advanta- ? I geous perches about the vicinity. I nar-
? ?') rowed in day by day.
.," The warblers soon grew accustomed to -. the click of the shut~ _ ter. Then I leveled my Long-focus squorely FEMALE YELLOW-THFtOAT on the nest. Bird families are like human families in many ways. Sometimes a husband is as thoughtful about household duties as the wife, in other cases he rarely it ever assists in the care of the children. It is generally far more difficult to photograph a male bird than a female. Yellow-throat was a pleasing exception. He worked side by side with his wife and never feared or faltered for an instant. This was not the case in the black-throated gray warbler family. The pater families seemed unavoidably detained away from home on matters of business or social importance most of the day when the children were crying for food. The wife took entire charge of feeding and caring for the nestlings. Only the male has the jet black throat, which is a distinctive mark of the species. The female wears a white cravat. But, to my notion, she is a deal more important in warbler affairs than her more highly marked mate. Fortunately, just at the side of the fir sapling, in which we found the gray warbler's nest, was the sawed-off stump of a large tree. Upon this we could climb