Gene Stratton-Porter, one of our most noted writers of nature stories, writes many interesting
stories. One very nice one is “Friends in Feathers.”
In the book, she tells of many interesting incidents with birds. She says about the first thing to do is to win a bird’s confidence. By moving about, quietly among the birds and wearing forest
colors such as greens, grays and browns, the birds will soon see that you aren’t going to harm them.
When she takes their pictures, she covers her camera with leaves and branches such as the birds are accustomed to. She gets pictures of the birds when mating, angered, love, fear, hilarity, wisdom when guarding the nest and brooding.
She tells of one incident where she found a baby robin which had been fed something poisonous. Its throat was filled with clear, white blisters until it was panting for breath. She punctured the blisters with a needle and gave it some oil, but it died.
In other places she proves things such as the quail cuts her eggs in halves so that all her baby
birds may be released at the same time.
Another incident she tells of a baby oriole she found, that had hung itself when making its nest. Release was all it needed.
After reading this book, I think that everyone would love birds more than before and try to spare them as much as possible.
This was one of the winning essays written for “Children’s Book Week.” The contest was
conducted by the Concordia (KS) Library. It was published in the Concordia Blade-Empire
(Concordia, Kansas), 3 Dec 1921, p. 3. Alberta Wright, 12, Seventh Grade.
This book was written from Gene Stratton-Porter’s bird studies in Geneva. We are happy that a young person chose to read one of Gene’s non-fiction books for the essay contest and that she enjoyed it.