Monday, October 8, 2012

October 8: Brussels sprouts

Yesterday I experienced the birder's nirvana of spending the day on Monhegan Island after a "fallout," when thousands of birds were crawling all over the island. Palm Warblers were bobbing on lawns and all over Lobster Cove beach, catching sand fleas in the wrack. Black-throated Blue Warblers had invaded Fish Beach. Yellow-rumped warblers were bouncing like popcorn amid the spruce stands. And at one point we stopped to admire a vegetable garden and were delighted to see a Black-throated Green Warbler hopping in the bright green lettuce and a Magnolia Warbler perched in the Brussels sprouts.

Later, a mother and her young son were also observing the garden, although not to watch the birds like we had. I heard the mother explaining to the boy how to find the Brussels sprouts on the thick, leafy stalks. Because, let's face it, Brussels sprouts are weird-looking plants and it's hard to figure out exactly how those mini cabbages actually grow.

Today Beth's Farmstand in Warren boasted a large crop of Brussels sprouts, one of my husband's favorite vegetables.

They'd also posted a lengthy explanation of what to do with this strange foodstuff: 
"When prepared properly they are gourmet."
I'm personally not all that fond of Brussels sprouts to eat (unless someone makes them "gourmet" for me--Pai Men Miyake in Portland offers my favorite). I simply find them fascinating to look at, particularly when migrating warblers are involved.

Brussels sprouts' knobby stalks.
Delicate grace
of a foraging warbler.


  1. Lovely post - so glad to get a good migrating warbler report from Monhegan Island. Up here in the inland lakes I'm not seeing or hearing them, though I'm sure they are flying overhead at night. Thank you, Kristen!

  2. You're welcome! I've had some good birding days out there, but have really never experienced anything quite like that on Monhegan before.