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Borrego Springs, CA

Monday, June 16, 2014

A visual acuity test for you

When I checked the weather forecast this morning, it was not looking too promising for this week, and today looked to be the best of the bunch.  So instead of going to Fargo as I had planned, I opted to do some chores in the morning and Bridgett and I headed out for more trail checking in the afternoon.  Of course, the sunny skies clouded up as we left and we had light rain for the next four hours.  It didn’t really hamper our trail checking, but it did lessen our chances of seeing much wildlife.  Everything was hunkered down except the mosquitoes.  They were absolutely nasty.

We removed several light trees that had fallen in the storms over the last five days or so, but also encountered a couple that were too big for us to handle.  Those will be taken care of by someone with a chain saw and bigger muscles.

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As we were heading back to headquarters, I caught a movement out of the corner of my eye.  I backed the truck up, and sure enough a beaver was making its way across the waters of a pond.  It dragged a good sized log up onto a fairly new den.

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Beaver dams and dens are fairly easy to find on the refuge, but actually seeing a beaver working on one of them is a different story.  I think it had something to do with the dark overcast skies and rain.  That may also be the reason that we saw more deer out and about this afternoon than I’ve ever seen here in one day before.

Before checking in at headquarters, I wanted to show Bridgett a roughed grouse nest I’d found out about, and try to get some pictures.  A well hidden nest is not the easiest thing to get pictures of.

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Talk about a challenge.  This nest was hidden under the foliage at the base of a tree.  You can just barely see some of her feathers in the middle left of the picture.  She’s been brooding these eggs for a couple of weeks while all the construction for the new Discovery Center goes on not 10 yards away.  The chicks should be hatching any day now, and we didn’t want to disturb her too much in this inclement weather so we only stayed a minute or two.

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Here’s the visual acuity test.  Can you find mama’s eye staring at me through the grasses?  Unless you know exactly where to look, I think a thousand people could walk by this nest and never know it’s there.

I’ve been waiting for about a week and a half for a delivery from Amazon.  I’ve ordered several things lately, and was waiting for the last one.  I got an email that said they tried to deliver it last Friday, but couldn’t get in.  Yeah, Friday afternoon the brown shirts are out of here like rats on a sinking ship.  Can’t blame them really, I would be too if I was working.  Anyway, I called UPS this morning to see if they would try to deliver it again today and think I spoke to a woman in India.  She couldn’t understand what a Wildlife Refuge was when I tried to explain.  She wanted me to live in a house.  Thinking smile

She finally assured me that the package had once again gone out on the truck for delivery, so I planted myself at the gate to headquarters at 4:00.  That’s when everyone heads home.  Along about quarter to five, the brown truck arrived.  I flagged him down.  When he opened his window he said, “Judy, did they talk you into coming back again this year?  How’s your refrigerator doing?”  It was the same driver that delivered my two fridge compressors during the government shutdown last year.  He’s a good guy.  It seems he wasn’t working last Friday, and he told me if he had been he would have just driven over to the RV sites to give me my package.  I’m sure glad he was on duty today.

Tomorrow I’ll be off to Fargo for some sponge candy, Breadsmith bread, and other errands.  More than likely it will be a sunny day with no hint of rain.  That’s the way it goes when you listen to the weather guessers.

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy

21 comments:

  1. Great pictures of the Beaver. I've never seen one actually working on a dam. Also, love the well-camouflaged Ruffed Grouse. Hope that she sticks around in spite of the construction racket!

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  2. Hope your ThermoCELL arrived and you can get into action against those nasty skeeters! Enjoyed your pics once they finally appeared. Cool to get a shot of the beaver a-building! You sure get a lot of rain up in those parts, eh?

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  3. Hope your ThermoCELL arrived and you can get into action against those nasty skeeters! Enjoyed your pics once they finally appeared. Cool to get a shot of the beaver a-building! You sure get a lot of rain up in those parts, eh?

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  4. I can pick out the eye, but never would have seen that nest!

    What a nice delivery man. Most of those guys are very nice. You must have made a good impression for him to remember you.

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  5. I did see her eye but like the others would never have found her or her nest.

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  6. That big log looks kind of like a giant mosquito to me...

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  7. Yep...you can never count on the weather guessers. Hope you have (had?) a productive day in Fargo. That just seems so remote...Fargo...but if they have sponge candy and a breadsmith I guess it's not! :)

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  8. I did see the eye! I love those kinds of tests!

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  9. I passed, saw the feathers in the first picture and the eye in the second. Great pictures and the beaver too. You always find such great things, rain or shine. If it's a thermacell, let me know how you like it. Be sure to turn it on about 15 min before you actually want it to work. My experience has been iffy. Happy candy!

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  10. Beavers are so elusive since they seem to be nocturnal. Now if you could just get him to work on those trees that are blocking the roads. Your mama was so well hidden and the killdeer was just right there on the road. I think yours has a better chance of survival. Some UPS guys are just the greatest ever.

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  11. Love the pictures of the Beaver. They are industrious. I once had a Beaver steal a six pack of beer from me at Lake Powell.

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  12. It is a small world isn't it! How cool that the delivery guy was the same and remembered you!

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  13. The ruffed grouse nest was really cool!

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  14. What an awesome thing finding that nest. I had to click on the pic for it to get bigger, but that is when the eye became visible.

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  15. Way cool nest, hope you catch the hatch:)

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  16. That grouse is sure giving you the eye ... good catch under difficult circumstances.

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  17. Spotted the eye since you told us it was there, but never would have found that nest. Reminds me of seeing the common paraques at Estero Llano Grande SP in TX. We looked for about 15 minutes until someone walked by and pointed them out right in front of us.

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  18. Love those industrious Beavers! We got to see a Mama Otter hauling her baby down a rocky cliff at Ortoona Army Corp campground in Florida...amazing animals as well!! I love to see the UPS guys pull up ...Means I'm getting something ..anything...I don't care...

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  19. I couldn't find the eye until I clicked on the picture to enlarge it, then I saw it. I'm surprised you saw the nest! You have good eyes!

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