Spring is in the air

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Posted by Shawn & Annette in Outdoors on March 11, 2011

I went out on the deck just before 6 a.m., and was amazed at the sounds which greeted me. About 10 feet from the deck is a small crop of trees surrounded by fallen dead trees, perched in close proximity to each other, were roughly a dozen Steller Jay’s caterwalling in unison. It was the strangest thing.

Normally, when Steller Jay’s gather to feed and fight (their other pasttime) they will take turns calling to each other. One Jay usually can be easily singled out as the leader of the pack, who doesn’t take any guff from his subordinates. Today was different. They were obviously upset about something as they diligently bellowed their urgent call to each other with an intensity rarely seen in birds of this type.

It led me to wonder if they could have been reacting to the earthquake in Japan, and the subsequent tsunamis. Wouldn’t that be something?

After carrying on for roughly 3 or 4 minutes, they went back to their normal cawing like nothing happened. One by one they abandoned their statue-like stance and flew off to do the things that Steller Jay’s do. Last year, we had one Steller’s Jay who loved to annoy the squirrels. Each time the squirrel attempted to get a drink of water, the Steller’s Jay would dive-bomb him, in an attempt to knock him into the water.

My husband took great joy in watching their antics right outside his office window.

Yesterday, we had a doe and twin fawns wander into the yard. She was the largest doe I’ve seen in a very long time in Twain Harte. She looked well-fed and her fawns were nice sturdy stock as well. Our two hard snowfalls this year didn’t seem to do the deer population any harm what-so-ever. In fact, our long warm spell in January probably contributed to their added size and girth.

I can only image how big some of the bucks must be.

I picked up several kinds of bird seed at the feed store today. I noticed we have a large flock of Junco’s and a dozen or more Mountain Quail, as well as a few other birds I still need to identify. I believe we also have a great many Black-headed Grosbeak as well.

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