Birds seemed to dominate my thoughts during the morning walk today. With Foster on leash, I took off through the woods to the usual melodious sounds of various species coming from every direction.
The grass is dryer than it has been, so getting off the trail and continuing my daily search for little surprises in plant growth added some fun to the walk.
I've discovered that one of Bill's brush piles has several long dewberry vines extending over the sticks and needles. That means more dewberries in the woods and maybe even some to pick one of these days.
Over the past year or two, I've found different spots around the woods where the vines have come back after several years of being grazed off by goats.
I'm amazed at how long it takes plant life to return.
Anyway, Foster and I reached a point in the lowlands where the grass was high and wet, so I returned to the trail.
On the south trail through the last section of woods, a new overnight deposit greeted us. A contest could be set up: count the feathers.
I'm guessing several hundred guinea-hen feathers (our neighbor to the west has a herd of guineas--one fewer this morning) were strewn across a space 3-5 feet in diameter.
I'm also guessing Mr. Coyote, who chased Kea off last Sunday morning, had himself a feast overnight.
No signs of the actual bird, but enough feathers for Bill to tie flies for eternity.
Once again, I was glad to have little Foster on leash. We walked on through the woods, and once we returned to the yard, the dogs and Jonas entered their new Border Collie Nation Plus One domain.
While walking across the front yard, it struck me (almost literally) that little chickadees exert a lot of energy, not only in their singing but also as they flutter just past one's ear.
That flutter sounded more like Big Bird than a voice behind those daily Cheeeeeez burger serenades.
Without the dogs, I was able to walk down the road while waiting for the paper. When one of the Love Doves came in for a landing on the light pole next to the road, I tuned in to its "caw."
My question is: what is a Love dove saying when it "caws" rather than "coos"? Nothing heavy-duty to think about, but some day I'm sure someone will fill me in.
In the meantime, I prefer the softer coo-coo-coo which we hear all day long.
And, finally on my walk, I leaned over to pick some tall grass from one of the flower beds. A resident robin sat just four feet away and remained there, unconcerned of my presence.
Earlier this week, Debbie and I noted that we probably get most of the same robins back every year. And, on that note, we wonder if they've bonded with us like our domesticated animals.
That thought occurred as a group of robins gathered in our midst while we stood around the dog run, kinda like they didn't want to miss any of the gossip.
Anyway, all those birds---at least the ones that stay away from coyotes---keep us pretty entertained.