Spotting a bundle of grass and cotton in a young Burr oak, I approached quietly to it. A sturdily built nest sat on a crook of one of the upper branches. And what a delight! A Robin lay tucked into the nest.
What a surprise and what a delight to spot four Snowy Plovers. One of them sat on the sand, one of them dashed about searching for a bite to eat and to chase a Least Sandpiper away, and the others stood in the wind.
Also searching for food tossed by Dick in front of the blind. Other birds we saw were cowbirds, a Northern Harrier, a Red-winged blackbird, and a Mourning dove, in addition to hearing two Bobwhite quail.
What a delight to discover four Yellow-crowned Night herons at the airport. Stalking prey amid the grasses and flowers, they walked stealthily in the pond. I remained still in the truck, my long lens emerged from my window. Three herons lifted up into the air and flew away. Nearby, I heard the sound of a Red-tailed hawk. One heron, though, remained in the pond, tracking down a crawfish. He managed to capture it just as Jim walked around the corner, grasping a leash on which Mitty was tethered. The heron swallowed his supper, and then moved briskly across the pond, away from Jim and Mitty. When I left, he had crouched down into the grass, contentedly, I suppose.
Nopadol Paothong's website offers his book, Save the Last Dance, for purchase. The book shows beautiful photography of the grouse species in North America.
Nop drove us to Dick Wilberforce's lek in Hemphill County. The day was cloudy with 30-knot winds. Our anticipation grew when in the dark we could hear the roosters begin their display: Wulluh wulluh wulluh, they began, clak clak clak, then the fluttering of their wings.
We could hear them but not see them. I told myself to stop straining my eyes to see them, that dawn would come soon. Only twenty yards away, I could see a small figure on the grass moving about, dashing, dancing, "lekking." I held my breath.
In 2014, I visited the same lek. Back then, the sun rose and gave the chickens some warm lighting. Click this link to view that post.
A rooster ready to display.
Standing on a log, searching the prairie, waiting for a female.
Spotted: My first Scissortail of the season, Pie-billed Grebe, Greater Yellowlegs, Ibises, Mourning Doves, Eurasian Collared Doves, Red-winged Blackbirds, Barn Swallows, Red-tailed Hawk, Northern Harrier, Dowitchers, Lesser Yellowlegs, White-rumped Sandpiper, Least Sandpiper, [Sandpiper that looks like a Semipalmated], Black-necked Stilts, Avocets, Canada Goose, Killdeer, Mockingbirds, Great Blue Herons, Northern Shovelers, Bobwhite, Blue-winged Teals, Green-winged Teals, American Black Ducks, Wigeons, Coots, Buffleheads, White-crowned Sparrows, House Sparrows, Savannah Sparrows.
Little town in the Texas Panhandle. See more about Allenreed at the Texas State Historical Association http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hna15.
Interestingly, the town was once known as Springtown or Spring Tank, thanks to a nearby spring; Prairie Dog Town, as it sat near a colony; and amusingly but regrettably, Gouge Eye, after a bar fight. Thankfully, it is now known after two men who worked toward developing the area.
The small store offers postcards and stamps, and the services of a post office. I bought an amusing card, wrote a message on it for MyMrMallory, bought a stamp, too, then handed the card to the nice lady there, who mailed it for me.
Listen, will you? I think that . . . literature, poetry, music and love make the world go round . . . while mathematics explains things; I fill my life with them, then go walking in snowy woods. Let us go then, you and I like two etherized patients floating through life, together feeling prufrockian. DDB Jr. makes my world go 'round; during his absence, Pachelbel fills it up. One summer I sailed across the Atlantic Ocean, then through the Gulf of Finland to reach Saint Petersburg; I pursued Joseph Brodsky in its alley ways. I dream of making that two summers. I read “Biking to Electra;” found my way in a Jaguar car, and glanced at the flashing steel grasshoppers at sunset. I’ll follow K.O.P.’s footsteps after he followed N.Scott Momaday’s; find warmth and inspiration on a rainy mountain. Throw chinese coins for the I Ching. Save the whales, the spotted owl, the woman in toil. Cast a fly for trout; my memories of fly fishing under the sunny blue Colorado sky remain; I yearn to build more . . . with more trophy Browns. Listen for the swan’s calls on the Baltic Sea. Feel KKII's joy, his arms spread wide in Yazilikaya. Good night, Jimmy Durante, where ever you are.