Friday, November 21, 2014

Bird Tales

by Pa Rock
Farmer in Winter

It's turned cold again in the Ozarks.  Rosie and I are hunkered down in the house where I am typing in front of the living room picture window and watching some of the chickens peck at the birdseed that is scattered below the feeder.  The bird feeder is full, and so is the birdbath, though I doubt my feathered friends will do much in the way of bathing today.  Rosie is asleep at my feet, but she is so small that she can only manage to warm one foot at a time.  I need a bigger dog!

I did find a dead sparrow in the backyard earlier today.  It's little corpse was still warm and there were no signs of an attack by a predator.  I guess it was just the little bird's time to go.  There are several birds spending the winter in the big brush pile that I have created over the past year - and no telling what else lives there with them.   I picked up some sticks out of the yard earlier today, and when I tossed them on the brush pile, birds flew in every direction.

I have a fence row that needs cleaning, a process that will create the start of another good brush pile.  Next year I may raise a few baby quail.  My little place would be an ideal refuge for a covey for two.

The birds have also discovered the new chicken coop with an abundance of corn chops strewn about the concrete floor.  When I walk in there during the day, several always rise in flight to get away from me.

My other bird encounter today was at the Thanksgiving dinner at the Senior Center.  The cooks had prepared a lovely big turkey - and it was delicious!

Years ago when I was junior high and high school principal up the road in Mountain View, Missouri, I stepped into my assistant's office just as a junior high student (I'll call him "Josh") was leaving.  The kid looked mildly amused.  When I stepped on in to talk to the assistant principal - the building disciplinarian - he was doubled over in laughter.  One of our more sarcastic teachers had sent the boy to the office for something he had said.  Apparently the teacher had referred to Josh as a "turkey" for some response he had given in class.  Josh, not missing a beat, turned to the teacher after being called a turkey - and replied, "Eat me, Pilgrim!"  She didn't see the humor in it, but the assistant principal certainly did!

'Twas the season!

Rosie has begun to bite my feet.  It must be time for our walk!

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