Shades of Autumn

A brilliant autumn day at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. I am back on deadheading duties in the Rose Garden, happy to be among trees under a bright blue sky with busy little kinglets for company. These tiniest of songbirds, of the genus Regulus ("little king"), got their name from the ancient legend known since the time of Aristotle and Pliny of the election of the King of birds. In the story, the title of King would be bestowed on the bird who could fly the longest distance. The eagle, who had outflown all the other birds, was actually beaten to the title by a small bird who had hidden in its plumage. The "smallest of birds" then became the King of birds.

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