Thursday, August 21, 2008

PART III-Crow Games and Cicada Exoskeletons

You've no doubt noticed already that though this is titled Part III there isn't a Park I and II. That's because the sequence is so long using dial up that you can only have Part III today.

It's okay as Parts I and II are about watching a pair of Sandhill Cranes and a trio of Canada Geese work a harvested wheat field getting closer, and closer, and closer to each other. Then just as they were about to meet and I could find out just what interaction might take place, the murder of Crows that had been scolding me viciously for sometime, suddenly halted their screaming and their group flying. They then began to congregate beyond the rise you see above.

This getting behind a hump and then popping a head up now and again seems to be a standard Crow move. Of all the day to day species congregating around the wheat field, Crows insist on doing what they are doing when I appear, but then they insist upon doing it, just where I can't see them do whatever it is.

Turkeys tend to hightail it. The Sandhills and the Geese knew I was there but continued their business within sight with the slight addition of more vigilance by one of their members. Not the Crows. Oh no.

After the first couple of Crows went behind the hill with here a head, there a head, the entire murder decided to go back there and torment me with their mysterious goings on.

The heads disappear, a Crow lands right, and hurriedly disappears beyond the slope as well.

The sentinel pops up again with a full head and checks out the squirrel up right, while two other Crows allow only the tops of their skulls to show. By this point I've counted 17 Crows diving for the bunker. They must be lined up like infantry back there. It does occur to me that it's a good thing that they don't have little coffee table sized cannons to shoot at me and other intruders. I bet they'd do it too, if they had them. All the while doing the Crow equivalent of knee slapping laughs. Though it would be hard for Crows to slap their knees as they bend the reverse of ours, even if they had hands to slap with.

A second head appears and there seems to be a bit of a Crow discussion ensuing with the sentinel. Plans for dinner? Invitation for drinks? How to make cannons...

While one head looks right, the other looks left and a third bird just blows by all of us.

Sentinel is still keeping an eye on squirrel, who has decided that he must cross the road, no matter the possibility of becoming embroiled in the "games".

The duo of Crows does an impression of Janus for me.

Ah HA! They were just pulling my attention so yet another Crow can make it safely into the entrenchment.
And then dear readers, the memory on my camera was full. By the time I'm done checking it, well under 30 seconds --there isn't a Crow to be seen.
Later, on my way out I checked their area. What should I find but a five foot diameter mud puddle in the low spot. Sorry, it isn't a mud puddle it's a Crow "pool". Perhaps they meet there of an evening to discuss the events of the day. Or more like to take an evening drink before sleep, which of course doesn't preclude the first suggestion at all.

Tomorrow we'll take on the The Cranes and Geese, but in the meantime it's off to a discovery by CP photographer Eleanor Tauber.
Photograph by Eleanor Tauber
Remember the beautifully spooky photos by Eleanor of the Cicada coming out in the dark? Well it's now daytime and Eleanor has discovered a Cicada exoskeleton still gripped onto a fence.
Photograph by Eleanor Tauber
Plus the exit aperture a metamorphosed cicada used. Rather like an unneeded coat that's left carelessly behind at the coat check, never to be thought of again.
Donegal Browne

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