Niche Market Fable | Feb 2016

Niche Market Fable

American Dipper in Niche Market Fable

American Dipper

Here is a Niche Market Fable About the American Dipper

Long, long ago, in the mythical lore of how everything began, the birds gathered to choose careers.

One by one, each species chose a job that matched its size and abilities.

Finally, after all the ordinary jobs had been taken, this small bird raised a wing.

“I want to dive head first into cold, fast-moving rivers. Then I’ll swim under water, catching larva, bugs, and other small critters.”

All inhaled in surprise.

Not a peep could be heard as they weighed this absurd idea.

Then the Great Feathered One said, “Done.”

So now, if you go out to a fast-moving, shallow river in the West, you might see an American Dipper.

They’re fun to watch as they dive in the water, disappear for a while, and then pop out – often returning to the rock they left.

Of course, they can be challenging to find since they spend much of their time under water.

Worldwide there are five species of Dippers. They have a patchy distribution, appearing in Europe, Asia, small areas in North Africa and the Middle East, and some western areas of North plus South America.

This photo was taken January 2016, in Zion National Park, Utah, when the water temperature was 38 F (about 3 C).

As you might expect, this was the only bird out there. That’s because there’s no competition when you work in a niche market.

Much success,

Steve Kaye

Find more stories about birds at:

The Bird Who Knew Too Much

This Really Made the Birds Mad

Simple Request


See photos of Zion – Steve’s Photos of Zion

Learn more about Zion National Park –

Did You Know?

The most effective way to help birds is to buy land.

Here are three organizations that excel at doing this.

1) American Bird Conservancy

2) The Nature Conservancy

3) The Trust for Public Land

Please visit their web sites to learn about the work they do.

Here’s an excellent book: The American Bird Conservancy Guide to Bird Conservation

You can help – Please share this blog with others.
Inspiring Respect for Nature, one bird at a time.

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  • Lou Arnwine
    Posted at 12:19h, 23 February

    Thanks for letting us in on these birds we probably will never see, but who are a part of the wonderful world we live in. It’s great to have the fable to explain it all.

  • Gillian Martin
    Posted at 13:21h, 23 February

    GREAT photo, Steve! And an amusing introduction of it! The dipper is one of my favorite birds. It most certainly has a unique niche…the only songbird I believe that actually swims under water!

  • Kathryn Grace
    Posted at 15:07h, 23 February

    Never heard of this bird until now, Steve. Thanks for educating me today.

  • Candace Cox
    Posted at 12:02h, 25 February

    A great short story, Steve. So a dipper reduces competition by going where others fear to tread 😉

  • Debra Atlas
    Posted at 17:57h, 25 February

    Great story, Steve. So fun to learn about Nature’s wonders.
    Thanks for the post.

  • Thilda Zorn
    Posted at 19:25h, 25 February

    Steve, thanks so much again for your story and the photo – what a playful way of learning!
    adios, Thilda

  • Susan Bulger
    Posted at 20:09h, 25 February

    Yes, an amazing bird. Great story, too. We have had the privilege to seeing one in action.

  • Lin Morel
    Posted at 09:20h, 26 February

    Thanks for the reminder that each one of is created to find a spot
    in life (and nature) that is uniquely ours.

  • Nancy
    Posted at 10:22h, 20 March

    Another great photo! You really should contact Smithsonian Magazine and see if they’ll let you do an article or a short essay. These are wonderful!

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