I quickly shaved and brushed my teeth, a shower would have to wait. Threw some old clothes and old shoes on. At one point we would be fording a creek.
Beth got me into birding, not that I am in anyway a proficient or competent birder, but she and Ken have taught me what little I know.
She is a very knowledgeable and dedicated birder and can identify a huge number of birds by sound, a talent I totally lack.
She told me to bring my camera but it was a cloudy, funky day and I didn't expect much nor ultimately achieve much. I was worried that it would rain on the camera and brought my slicker but luckily we were spared.
Really just wanted an excuse to get a great hike in with my friend and maybe learn something. And I did.
I admit that I get certain swallows and swifts mixed up, they are very fast and hard to pin down. I may have misidentified.
In addition Beth punked out and wouldn't report the Pacific flycatcher that she knows she heard and I heard. Her auditory skills are very impressive.
But birders are funny and you list an early visitor like that without a pic and people get weird.
And showed me the slide areas where the resident beavers were pulling the brush and logs into their dams. There's a lot of water in the Santa Margarita right now.
A beautiful lone male mallard dropped down and made our acquaintance.
This one showed some very interesting flight behavior dropping down and then returning to his perch like a typical flycatcher.
I just couldn't find the right vantage or angle.
These birds are very poorly trained and it is always tough to get them to comply.
High above, two hawks made lazy loops. I told Beth they were red tailed. I was wrong. I believe she was correct, they are red shouldered. Coopers? Broad winged? Shoot! Hey, they were really high up there.
Go outside. it will do you a world of good. Forget your troubles, you can find them later if you need to.
Remember the immortal words of the Jefferson Airplane - it don't mean shit to a tree.
(note: or to a hawk in a tree, caught the nesting red tailed on the way home. beth thinks it might actually be the male, it is so small. makes sense. honestly, I've never had parents share sitting duties to this degree, makes it tough.)