Rain returned to the Willamette Valley today, and I think it is a good thing for both man and bird. We have had an unusually long dry spell. I took a brief break this afternoon from un-packing to sit at the window and watch the birds in the rain. This Mourning Dove was sitting stoically all alone on the fence in the pouring rain. Then all of a sudden I noticed this strange behavior of lifting up its wing. It repeated this several times, then reversed sides and repeated the same exercise with the opposite wing. This was followed by a vigorous shake and then more wing lifts. I’m convinced it was taking advantage of the rain for a shower. I’ve been aware that rain is important to humans; it is after all what makes Oregon green. It fills our streams and lakes and cleans out the pollutants in the air. But I had never considered that rain is something that birds might take advantage of and even enjoy.