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Feeder Birds

American Kestrel gives me a look

 

Northern Pygmy-owl strikes terror in the hearts of the finches.

 

Common Redpoll. It is in the same family as American Goldfinches and Pine Siskins. This is an irruptive species, showing up in big flocks some winters and other years they stay farther north if the food is plentiful. This year I have been seeing a flock of 100 or more some mornings.

I’ve spent much of the first half of January right here. Staring at this screen. Rebuilding my website. It was a painful process – mentally and physically. Now it’s done. More or less. There’s always something more that could be done. And goodness knows, restoring all of those blog posts is on my ‘to do’ list. But for now it will have to wait. Take a look at Reflected Light Images if you are interested to see what I do when I’m not doing this other stuff.

There have been a few brilliantly sunny days but in general it’s been gray. There has been some new snow so skiing conditions are generally good whether for cross country or downhill. Ken and I made a trip to the Loup Loup Ski Bowl last weekend. It was a long ago gift from him to me and I was pleasantly surprised to find out I could still do it. Tomorrow I have a wedding to photograph at the Loup and I am feeling confident about my downhill skills and looking forward to another fun day.

Yesterday as I returned from a meeting on a bluebird day, I noticed a flock of Common Ravens near the side of the road. Not only were the birds next to the road, there was a pullout. As I slowed down (fortunately there was no one behind me) I could see at least two Bald Eagles in the group. Unseen to me, there must have been a roadkill behind the snowbank. As my car approached the group, the ravens all flew off. I was able to drive into the wide spot off the side of the road and watch and photograph the eagle for a few minutes before it decided that I was intruding on its space and it flew off, although it didn’t go far. As I drove away, I could see it in my rear view mirror, returning to the roadkill.

Hurricane Molly, aka Red Molly, now almost 18 months old, came to stay with us for ten days in December. Ken was pretty nervous about having her for so long but by the time she went home, he had to admit that she is a lot of fun. That dog never knows a sad moment, never gets mad, never feels pain, never runs out of energy. No matter how active she is, she is ready for more. Our dogs were pretty well exhausted by the time she left. Sky pushed her into the snow time and time again, grabbed her by the throat repeatedly and she still came back for more. She loves Sky. To the moon. Luna learned to keep me between herself and Molly and walked behind me most of the time. If she was in Molly’s path, she learned to duck away at the last moment to avoid a bruising collision. Molly doesn’t always know when to put on the brakes.

We walked everyday. Sometimes we went skiing. We did keep her as busy as possible but there were some days when I had to get some work done and she would get bored and continuously bring me a ball or something else for a game. Overall she was a good dog and brought lots of joy into our life.

In case you’ve forgotten, here is what Molly looked like a year ago.

It’s hard to believe that December and 2017 are nearly over. I’ve spent lots of time outside in the cold weather and powder snow with dogs. Here are some images that don’t feature dogs.

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