For as long as I can remember I have loved mockingbirds. They are not scared of anything. They are small birds with no back up in them. I have seen mocking birds take on, and completely run off, hawks twenty times their size. They will chase off cats. I saw one mocking bird land on a cat's back and pluck fur from it for its nest. I have seen them run off dogs, and have had more than one dive bomb me - actually hitting me on the top of my head. Hell, it might have taken off with some of my hair for its nest. I love them because they have heart.
My wife brought home a small chihuahua a couple of years ago. A rescue dog that had been badly abused by its previous owner. I say small in conjunction with chihuhua because she is small for a chihuahua. She weighs about a pound and has delicate little bones. But man, that dog is one tough little terror. She has gone after big dogs several times, got one pit bull by the lip and had it on its back. She is a warrior. I'm more than half scared of her myself. She has a bit of psycho in her, probably from the abuse. I tried to put a collar on her (just once) and she just about chewed my arm off. She is kind of old and doesn't have all her teeth, but I don't care. When she goes into buzz saw mode I give her plenty of room. My wife's sense of humor is well displayed by the name she gave her. She named her Sugar. Sugar my a...., Poison would be a better name. I love that dog, she has heart.
I love bluegills. There is no fish that I've ever caught that fights like a bluegill. Those little buggers fight every inch of the way with every ounce of strength they have. They never give up fighting. Even when they are exhuasted they still keep on fighting. They fight each other for food, they fight other fish that get too close, they fight just for the fun of fighting. They fight when the water is icy cold. They put up a better fight ounce for ounce than any other fish. Thank God they don't have teeth, or the river wouldn't be a safe place and I would have to bank fish for them. They are so tough that when I release them, they always seem to manage to flip water into my face as they swim away, giving a real kick to their tail as they go. It happens so consistenly that I truly believe they are doing their version of flipping me off. You gotta love that. As I wrote yesterday I love to catch big fish, but bluegills are a case in point that size isn't everything. Heart is.
If I had to choose only one fish that I could catch for the rest of my life, out of all the fish in the world, including giant marlin and steelhead and bass and muskie, I would choose bluegills. A 2wt fly rod and 2lb test leader and off I would go, happy as all get out.
I love bluegills, they have major heart.