Journal for March 2003

4 Turkeys in eastern Center Valley.  They seem very comfortable – grazing and walking slowly toward the house.   This is the first time we’ve seen turkeys from the windows.  They’re all males.

Last night we had Dan and Jackie and Emmett over for an Indian dinner.  Great party!  Our first guests.

This morning I was a red fox crossing Center Valley – the first time we’ve seen a fox here.  It had a very bushy tail, held straight back, and very black ears.

First skiing this weekend – there’s lots of powdery snow, so we tried out 3 Finger Valley and the cabin trail and over the top and down Willow Road.

65 degrees!  A gorgeous day!  Raptors are heading north – we saw one Golden Eagle, 2 Bald Eagles,  2 Red-tailed Hawks, and several others that were too far up to identify, in a group, riding the thermals above the Sumac Prairie bluff.  We also saw a butterfly on the way in – maybe a comma.

The frog pond is very full – nearly up to the spillway – with sheets of ice floating in it.  Jackie says that the ground is frozen so far down that the water can’t drain out.  Their pond is overflowing.

Last night we called in a Great Horned Owl, and later we looked at Saturn in the scope – it’s tilted so you can see the whole outer ring.  And we heard a Saw Whet Owl calling.  We played the tape to it, and it kept calling back.  Now we’ve had all 4 kinds of owls here – the common ones.

The first bluebird, red-winged blackbirds, fox sparrows, and song sparrow this weekend.  The birds are really singing in the brush along the driveway.

3/23 & 3/24/03
The juncos have finally found the feeders!  There were 5 in my new feeder at one time yesterday.  I hope they encourage some other species before they fly north for the summer.  Lots of juncos and song sparrows singing in the bushes.

Lots of eagles soaring over the bluffs, and our first Vulture of this year.

Many Infant moths on the road and flying. There were about 15 Compton’s Tortoiseshells in the garage – I wonder how they get there.

House finches (a pair) have joined the juncos in the feeders.  It looks like something has eaten some of the suet, but I haven’t seen who it is yet.

Hundreds of Tundra Swans were in the river south of Nelson today – flying and honking and swimming.

A pair of cardinals have discovered that there’s food under the deck – but not on top of the deck!

At dusk we heard what I think was a Woodcock – a buzzy “peent” down near the Y in the ditch.  That’s where we saw a Woodcock before.  We didn’t hear its mating flight display.

We saw Canada Geese flying over – a new bird, I think, for the farm.  And two of what I think were Sandhill Cranes – flying low, with a loud rattling noise.