After watching a few minutes of news yesterday on the pandemic, I slumped back down in a chair, only to catch a glimpse of quail chicks zig-zagging by. Smiled instinctively. These newborns were drunk with life, the excitement of being somewhere, anywhere, for the first time under, of course, the watchful eye of their dad.Continue reading “Chicks on the Run”
This California valley quail chick, probably a month old, looks up in the morning light. How much of its survival instincts are embedded in its everyday life? I typically see 13 chicks starting off the life cycle in one family. At that rate we’d be overrun with quail, but were not. In ten years IContinue reading “Morning Hope”
The scrub jay does not fear me. This species of bird follows me around outside my house, fascinated, I guess, by the birdhouses I build, or the water stations I replenish daily. Bird books reveal that the scrub jay is one of the most intelligent of all animals, rivaling the chimp for smarts. In fact,Continue reading “California Scrub Jay”
I was painting my latest birdhouse fabrication red yesterday when a hummingbird hovered overhead, hence, the name, Hummingbird Hotel. This structure features a sliding roof slanted at 22.5 degrees–it is held in place by screws covered by slats that rotate. Simply turn two screws “lefty-righty” to release the roof if you wish to clean theContinue reading “Hummingbird Hotel”
Yesterday a plump adult male quail took over the oak stump in our front yard. This is where we usually leave Kenilworth ivy for wild rabbits. But this quail spent much of the day at the stump, probably guarding the 13 chicks that have been hiding in the undergrowth, or maybe it was waiting forContinue reading “The Stump”
Here’s my latest birdhouse fashioned out of scrap wood and driftwood during the current sheltering-in phase of life in Monterey County.
A California towhee takes a bath in our front yard makeshift tub–a drip hose running over a terra cotta saucer. We clean the saucer frequently as it is used daily by a variety of birds.
The double-crested cormorant lacks sufficient preen oil to shed water, so it often stands in the sun to dry off. Yet, this condition makes the bird an excellent hunter when diving underwater.
This yellow-rumpled warbler was photographed on a busy day at Carmel-by-the-Sea beach. There are no crowds during the pandemic, but the warblers are still around at the north end of the beach.