Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Gunk Eagle Steps Out, Another Gonzo Deck, and Ornithologists Young and Old

Many of you will remember the young Bald Eagle that came into the care of premier wildlife rehabilitators Bobby and Cathy Horvath that was covered with some kind of mysterious gunk that just would not come off no matter what they tried on it. Therefore Young Eagle mostly had to molt it off and awhile back was her release day. But before taking to the sky, she decided to step out and take a bit of a walk. Here is part of her stroll--
Through the grass...

Through the bushes...
Up to a tree...

And out the other side.

By this time most of us are familiar with Karen Anne Kolling's Gonzo Deck in Rhode Island but here's another gonzo deck. This time in Massachusetts, at the home of a friend of longtime contributor Betty Jo of California--

It turns out according to some research done by some Scottish scientists investigating the preferences of chickens when it comes to dream chicken houses and perches, which was later extrapolated by others to other fowl, that given their druthers they just love perching on the railings of porches...and as it turns out decks as well.

Of course one can't spend the entire day taking one's ease on the deck--

There are bird feeders to raid.

Also from Betty Jo, her daughter with Skylar the newest budding ornithologist in the family. They began taking young Skylar birding beginning at two months old, carefully pointing out each bird. I've known some children of Ornithologists who were mind boggling good birders, with incredible birding eyes and ears and Skylar is getting a great start. It is rather like the children of some Egyptologists who learn to read hieroglyphics by just "being around" before they learn to read their own native language.
Speaking of ornithologists, in from Karen Kolling of the Gonzo Deck, an obituary of a self-taught ornithologist who was remarkably well respected...and gasp--self taught! No Ph.D here, just superior work and perseverance.

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