Thursday, February 10, 2011

Pale Male Takes a Bath, Chris and Carol Crow Eat, and the Squirrel Tail as Portable Windbreak

Photo by Francois Portmann

Birder, Hawkwatcher and pro-photographer Francois Portmann caught Pale Male just as he was coming out of his bath in Azalea Pond. (Wouldn't that be a tad COLD?)

Photo by Francois Portmann
What's that?

Photo by Francois Portmann
How about a closer look.

And he's OFF!
For more of Francois' Hawk Mania go to-

11:40:52 am Carol appears to be watching something, likely another bird. Whether friend or foe I don't know as I can't see it.

11:41:16 am Carol hops down off the stump where there is a chicken breast in the snow. Is she attempting to tear a piece off?

Either she couldn't get a bite torn off or she was caching it by covering it with snow. She hops back up on the stump.

She begins to eat stew.

Whatever she was looking at has changed position.

Back to stew.

11:43:44am Now a bite of noodle casserole.

Back to stew.

11:46:05 am She flies to the bath and looks again at likely whatever she was looking at before, it has progressed further north.

11:46:15 am Now back southwest. She takes to her wings and flies west.

2:16:35 pm Later in the afternoon, Carol, right, is back on the stump and Christopher flies in and joins her.

2:17:11 pm Carol sees something. It's her turn to do sentinel duty as Chris has just arrived to eat. She takes off to the west.

Chris continues to eat.

With a bite in his beak he watches to the west.

Back to the stew.

Then he looks at me, pauses, and takes off toward the west.

It's been below zero for most of the last two days. When I first looked, this squirrel was sheltering in the lee of the picnic table and she had her tail crooked over her head. Then she moved down to eat and whenever she went into this upright eating posture she positioned herself so that her tail was covering the part of her body being struck by the wind. The squirrel tail often used for balance, and curled around the body in sleep like a blanket, is also used as a portable wind break.

Donna Browne

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