In Amsterdam, the hostel where I stayed got me excited the most was Oosterpark, the public park right next to it. It allowed me to spot some urban wildlife, birds in particular. Meeting these locals was an enchanting introduction to the city. Not every city had a rich urban biodiversity.
From mornings to evenings, bird calls seemed rowdy but diverse: woodpecker, parakeet, crow, and so on. It was a wet morning when I strolled the park, taking pictures with the DSLR. In an hour, I spotted at least seven different birds. It was more endearing to be greeted by them than the hostel guests. Later, I looked them up to identify them. It was part of the fun, y’know, fulfilling the sense of accomplishment.
This blog hasn’t featured urban wildlife for years. (I thought of dedicating a post to street cats in Istanbul. But they were more domesticated than feral—a complex relationship, indeed.) The last one was about the family of currawongs in our backyard in Sydney 13 years ago. This urban biodiversity aspect was one of the similarities between Amsterdam and Sydney, I found. And I enjoy Stilgherrian’s interactions with Critters on YouTube very much. I don’t get to that much these days in other cities.