Thursday, January 07, 2016
If you lived here in this kitchen and looked out the window to the old heifer pasture a thousand times a day, you might think that not much happens there.
Oh, deer and turkeys are spotted now and then, crows, Red-tailed Hawks, sometimes even a Bald Eagle. However, it usually seems pretty quiet and dull.
A frosty bit of dampness and a little leftover snow tells a far different tale.
I took a short walk yesterday, just up past the old trucks (this was made possible by the cows being in the barn now. I don't like to go out alone in the field with them. Sometimes the friendly attention of a creature that weights three-quarters of a ton can be a bit overwhelming and all).
I saw the tracks of mice and shrews and foxes, coyotes, deer, rabbits, red and grey squirrels, an opossum, and birds of many sizes. Stories were written in the white and blue and grey....here a coyote slipped and slid down the hill...interrupted in his trotting by ice.
There a fox took the easiest way down to the frozen stream probably hunting the tiny creatures who left tracks smaller than a pencil might make if you poked it in the snow.
In another spot a bit of drama, large deer tracks skidding down the hill, overlaid by coyote tracks the whole way. Did the deer escape? Who knows? At least it made it over the creek and up into the field behind the barn. Someone has forgotten to turn the electric fencer off...I can hear it clicking from the hop house....so there is no way I am crossing the trail to track the tale any farther.
I didn't see a single actual mammal and only two birds, a Downy Woodpecker and a White-breasted Nuthatch. However, it was easy to see that the woods and field are busy places when no one is looking. If the snow stays crusty like it is now...not too likely with warm weather and freezing rain coming in, I will be walking out there often.
Oh, and I did see a Ram.