Elsy Menko – Country – Flora/Fauna

Fieldfare and rowan berries

For this quilt I was graciously given permission to use one of Adri de Groot’s beautiful pictures of a fieldfare. Adri is a well known Dutch flora and fauna photographer who publishes bird diaries (vogeldagboek) on a daily basis. I have been following him for the last 15 years or so. To this picture he added the following description:

Birds can perceive colour much better than men. Just like us they recognize the three main colours green, blue and red, but they are also able to distinguish ultraviolet colours. Because of that extra pigment in the cones of the retina they are able to see if fruit is ripe or not. Ripe berries mirror uv-light and that is what birds see very well. In an area with different rowan berry bushes, some will be completely stripped while others will not be touched at all. To the human eye all berries are red, but by way of the uv rays of the layer of wax on the berries, birds know exactly which berries are ripe.

Commercial cotton fabrics, organza, fusing, free motion quilting and some hand stitching.

Detail view:

Photo: Adri de Groot



  1. A very elegant fieldfare; great choice of fabrics and neat stitching.

  2. Beautiful both the picture and your textile “translation”!

  3. Perfectly transferred and executed. Bravo!

  4. I really like the quilt. So delicate and calm colors. The bird is wonderfully transferred.

  5. An amazing moment captured by Adri and a beautiful interpretation by you. A lovely end to your series, well done!

  6. Really interesting information behind your beautiful work. Love your stitching!

  7. studiociboulette

    So beautiful, I love your choice of colors and such interesting information. Bravo!

  8. Thank you for the introduction to this beautiful bird. I love your choice of colors, so light and airy.

  9. Chantal Guillermet

    Your bird is very elegant and we can imagine him flapping his wings before landing on the branch ! the choice of colour is very delicate and effective. Bravo !

  10. Beautiful rendering of the fieldfare, and a very interesting fact about the uv vision of the bird. I love the berry bushes too

  11. Your bird is one beautiful part of a lovely quilt. Such a calm colour scheme too. Thank you for the information about how birds select ripe fruit.

  12. Such a beautiful quilt. I like the colors and how you did the bird and the berries. Thank you for the information. We people think we know a lot, but animals know so much more about nature.

  13. What an interesting explanation about how birds can see the ripe berries. I love the whole composition and especially how you integrated the beautiful bird in the nice and calm surroundings. The red berries gives it an extra touch. Wonderful work.

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