When I took the pooch out at 6AM this morning, not only was the sun not up yet, but the neighborhood was a bit incognito from all the moisture hanging in the air. A doe and her fawn were standing just on the other side of the Mighty Dachshund’s dumping ground, so I took her to the other side of the yard, so as not to disturb them. Even then, they walked out near the road and began grazing 150 feet away. After cleaning her off, we took our usual spots on the porch.
The rabbit from yesterday evening was back, but it was up near the driveway, nearly 75 feet away from the cover at the lawn’s edge. I’ve never seen an owl hunt in daylight fog or even a hawk, but I couldn’t help recoining an old phrase. “There are old rabbits and there are bold rabbits, but there are no old bold rabbits.”
The woods were quiet once again, though a single mourning dove did his mournful cooing from one of the white pines out near the road. A few minutes later, three crows sailed in, one landing on the ground and the other two alighting in nearby oak trees. The two in the trees repeatedly made the slow three-caw “okay to feed” message to the one on the ground, who poked and prodded into the grass as it strutted along. There’s always at least one sentry on duty at any given time. I assume they take turns or the sentry would soon starve to death. With their noisy conversation, the rabbit hopped down by the lawn’s edge to be near cover.
A male cardinal hunted through the grass this side of the big white oak in the front yard. In a few minutes, he flew up into the big oak out of sight, but he began making his location there known by his call of “what-cheer, what-cheer, what-cheer!”
From the woods came the repeated question “Whatcha doin’? Whatcha doin’? Whatcha doin’?” I’m not sure of the source. I’m thinking either a cardinal or a Carolina wren.
As I was looking out toward the road, I heard a fluttering of wings close to my left and turned my head in time to see a least fly-catcher leave in a panic from only two feet away and fly to a small dead branch in the closest oak. There, he(she?) made a short one note call with a question in it. It wasn’t like the call the books describe, so obviously the tiny birds have more than one call.
Eventually, the rabbit tired of the noisy crows and hopped into the weeds. Soon after, the crows left for new hunting grounds. In a few minutes, the pooch moved around some, as if the concrete was getting harder, and finally got up and walked to the door. That’s her way of saying “Come servant, take me into the house.” And so I did. During that time, the fog had grown thinner and the sky brighter, but the sun had yet to break through. When I looked at the clock, I noticed we’d passed 40 minutes outside. Copyright 2018