[mou] Woodcocks in the Snow! - long
northernflights at charter.net
Mon Apr 7 23:14:37 CDT 2008
Down on the Farm-Bagley, Clearwater County
Yesterday a freak storm dumped 12+" of fresh heavy snow on us. The
lawn had been practically snow free on Saturday. It's buried again,
but not for long. Now for a surprise!
At 8:20 PM I went out to the hen house to round up a few birds for
the breeding pen.
C. Geese were discussing the accommodations in the wetland to the
west. Then I heard them, "my" Sandhill cranes! They're back!
Seconds later a Woodcock started peenting from a poplar thicket knee-
deep in drifts. I leaned up against the 4-Runner and soaked it in. A
Barred Owl began to call from woodlot to the north. A flock of
Trumpeters Swans called in the distance. Then a Great Horned Owl
started up to the southwest. The Sandhills are still vocalizing when
a deer steps out of the eastern wood-line, crosses the small feral
pasture and makes her way to a hanging sunflower feeder 100' from me.
I don't move a muscle. A family of Coyotes sing and wail and yip
from the woods to the east. The Doe comes closer, 75 feet, 50 feet,
she still does not see me, the owls continue to court, the cranes are
down to a intimate rattle. Suddenly, out of who knows where, a
Woodcock flies about 4' above my head and peels off to the south
towards the wetland. Made me jump, the Doe bolt and Spring arrive,
all in the same moment.
The middle of Nowhere is Somewhere!
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