An Example Worth Following

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Nature Magazine, September 1937

How an individual can help to protect birds is well illustrated by the example of Miss Lena Hutchins of Bath, N. H., for 15 years a music teacher in Rock Island, Illinois, and for equally as long a time a busy music teacher in Bath and Woodsville. Miss Hutchins declares a recess for two days in every week for the purpose of devoting her time to the many birds that make the immediate vicinity of the stone house, which she occupies alone, their habitat. For three years Miss Hutchins has fed the birds, and the chickadees remain around her residence throughout the seasons. Every morning at eight o'clock the little band awaits her call, "Come, Chickadee". During the winter months, when the ground is covered with snow, they are hungry and will not hesitate to fly to her windows and rap for attention, if they have been neglected at the usual time. She feeds them suet regularly, but they prefer doughnuts. Only one at a time ever rests on the doughnut held in her mouth, but as many as five chickadees have rested on her person awaiting a turn at it. Miss Hutchins was scratched on the chin once when she had only a piece of a doughnut in her mouth, and another time one pecked at her eyebrows. She has since kept her eyes closed when feeding the birds in this manner. They always seem hungry and sometimes fly in the direction of her mouth, whether or not a doughnut is there.

Miss Hutchins, who has always been a great admirer of all species of birds, feeds the humming birds during the summer months by holding flowers in her hands.