Birds are not as gullible as you might think.
And NO, no birds were harmed during the making of these photographs. On the contrary, they managed to consume half a bag of sunflower seeds — the fancy black sunflower seeds they like so much more than the ordinary cheap birdseed — while absolutely refusing to hop into the dish, peek out over the rim, and give me the shot I was hoping for.
Even if a bird had flown into the casserole dish, I would have been too busy snapping photographs to pull the string. And why would I? Songbirds are the fava beans of the animal kingdom — too much effort for too little food. I’d prefer a nice fat chicken or a big bowl of chickpeas. Ideally, braised with butter and onions and cinnamon and currants, topped with toasted almonds, and served with couscous. (That goes for either the chicken or the chickpeas, or both together.)