Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Calculating Visitor

This winter has been a joke so far.  What little snow we had is now gone.  Temps have been in the high 40s and even 50+ range a few times since mid-December.  I swear I am waiting for someone to fire up a lawn mower or leaf blower.

Despite the lack of winter, some birds simply are going to do what they do. When their brain says "Migrate!", off they go, even if the destination is feeling more like Tennessee vs Michigan. 

Hiking a bit and cruising roads looking for anything good while just enjoying the day, it was nice to spy this Rough-legged Hawk.    

We saw it when it floated down to a telephone pole.   After a moment or two, he/she (I'm not sure which) went on its merry way. After crashing down on a vole, it finally landed on this pole for a fine look.  If you look close, you can even see the gore on the toes, throat, and chin.  Such sloppy eaters. 

Not only did the it snag that vole with little effort, but I found it amazing that it could automatically calculate the most awkward flight path as it relates to me and my camera. I swear the bird's brain could input sun angle, obstructions (powerlines, etc.), and the make of my car (with the lack of sunroof) into the perfect course for photo impossibilities. Oh, hell no, it couldn't land on a stump outside the car door. Nope.  I had to make due with the majestic and awe-inspiring........power pole.....

Whining aside, this breeder of the far north will likely find the chilly temps and winds that rolled into town today a bit familiar.   With seasonally expected temps now in the region (minus the snow), perhaps this gem will feel more at home.

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