Borrego Springs, CA

Friday, September 17, 2010

Fall rolls on…

When I take Emma for her first outs each morning around dawn, I’ve noticed the increasing silence as the season progresses.  There is no longer the exuberant cacophony of the dawn chorus of birds that we experience in spring and early summer.  Now, only a few Western meadowlarks sing a few notes.  The nighthawks no longer roost in the trees overnight, and today I brought in my hummingbird feeder.  Last week’s cold front passage persuaded many of my avian friends to take flight for warmer climes.  I, too, shall take flight in one week and head South.

The warblers that nest up North in Canada are streaming through the refuge, and serious birders are haunting the paths around the visitor’s center early each morning.  The tall trees around headquarters are a magnet in this desert for those little travelers needing a place to rest and refuel on their long journey.  We haven’t had a hard frost yet, so there are still abundant insects to build up fat reserves.
_MG_4365The 200+ sandhill cranes that nest on the refuge are beginning to congregate, and are being joined by others from up North.  They will soon be heading off to central California.
_MG_4861 _MG_4871
The red-tailed hawks are still soaring each afternoon in the skies, and they are being joined by other raptors that will winter here.  It is a time of change and movement.  For everything, there is a season…

This noon, there was a luncheon at the Narrow’s Saloon for those of us volunteers that will be migrating on in the next week or so.  Thanks was expressed for our contributions to the refuge along with wishes that we would return.  It was a nice ending to my time here.  I still have a few work days left, but most staff members will not be around next week.  It will be up to us volunteers to keep the refuge running.  :)

On the more mundane side, Judd, a fellow volunteer, stopped over this afternoon to see if he could find the elusive hydraulic leveler dip stick that I have been unable to locate.  Before retiring, Judd spent 40 years with his own mechanics shop and was very familiar with this sort of thing and big equipment.  After I told him what the Winnebago tech had said, it only took him about two minutes to find the dip stick.  Of course, unlike me, he knew what he was looking for.  :)  I’ll be buying more fluid tomorrow to replace the stuff that leaked out, but at least now we know where to put it.  Then it will be a matter of getting the rig to a qualified repair shop to get the leak fixed.    I have e-mailed the manufacturer of the system requesting a repair facility location.  That will pretty much determine my route out of here towards Texas.

Thanks for stopping by….talk to you later,  Judy


  1. We spent some time last February at the Salton Sea and I was amazed at the variety and number of birds that winter there. It was a fabulous sight to see. Your pictures are fabulous.

  2. It's always a lot better to be a good 'dipstick finder' than just a 'dipstick'!

  3. Glad that Judd was the man of the hour for your dipstick. Your pic of the Sandhill crane sure was nice. All of your blog posts there at the refuge have sure been interesting. It sounds like you have really enjoyed your time there.

  4. It seems like you just arrived at Malheur. Enjoy the rest of your stay there.

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  6. do as the birds do, when the weather turns...head south!!..they are the smart ones!..now if only we could do the same!!

  7. Love the photos (always), but the sunrise is especially spectacular! It DOES seem like you just got there... What's next?

  8. I always like your bird photos & yes, it seems like you just got there. What parts of Texas are you heading for? Our favorite place in all of Texas so far is the Big Bend area of course. They got mountains there:))

  9. Hope you enjoy your final week and then have a easy preparation for your take off. Give Emma a pet from us, Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  10. I enjoyed reading about your time there at Malheur! Your comment on the increasing silence there touched me as almost bittersweet.

    Looking forward to reading up on your next set of adventures down south!

  11. Our Hummingbirds are moving through here now, and will be gone soon. Guess we will have to catch up with them in South Texas or Arizona!! Loved you pictures...We have Red Tail Hawks here, too!

  12. We had a red tailed hawk fly right in front of the truck yesterday. It was the highlight of my trip. I think they are so pretty. Enjoy your last week there..

  13. Your bird photos are fabulous!! And the photo of the Oregon sunset is breathtaking!

    Thank you for sharing your creativity with us.

    We look forward to hearing about your Texas experience.


  14. Oh that red tailed hawk pic is just soooo wonderful, I can almost see him swooping soundlessly along on the air... wow!

    Glad you found your dipstick! We all need a good dipstick finder in our lives... haha

    Karen and Steve
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

  15. Glad you found the tank. I would welcome fall, we hit winter unexpectedly here yesterday with snow and ice. Actually changed spots at campground's urging for fear that the snow laden trees would fall on the coach.

    Time to get moving south.

  16. Great pictures love the sunset one. Safe travels when you move south.

  17. 200+ Sandhill Cranes must have been wonderful!
    Will you follow them south through central California on your way to Texas?
    They love the San Joaquin Valley, from one end to the other!
    Fantastic red-tailed hawk pics, I can hear the wind through his feathers!
    Safe travels.