A Bird in the Hand

A bird in the hand is a unique experience, Edward Rooks would believe.

A Bird in the Hand
Female pileated woodpecker rests on a tree / Image courtesy iStock

If there’s one thing a woodpecker hates, it’s an empty nest, as frequent contributor to SCM and friend of SCU’s art programs Edward Rooks notes in one of his lectures at Filoli Gardens this past year.

“They have a cache of valuable acorns to protect. So, the birds have evolved to recruit family members to protect it,” he says as a lecturer on the garden’s summer theme, NEST: Creating Home.

Through sacrifice, the family of woodpeckers help each other and make a home. It’s this poetry of nature that Rooks captures in his art. His naturalist paintings and photographs are award-winning and have appeared in biological journals, nature magazines, and even on wine labels.

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