Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sunday afternoon on the patio

I live in the suburbs, but there is a lot of undeveloped land in the area.   I was reading out on the patio where I could enjoy the cool autumn air and watch the birds. 

The thrasher was preventing the quail from dining at the bird block.  I had never seen it get aggressive before. It is about half the size of the quail, but the quail yielded to it.  Maybe they were intimidated by that long, curved beak.

Angel lay on the cement, staring at the block wall,  keeping watch for the squirrel. The first time she went to chase it, Peanut waylaid her, blocking her way with a snarl for no apparent reason.  The squirrel got away, as always. 

The hummingbird stopped to feed frequently, wings whirring.  I don't know if it was the 'owner' of the feeder or the intruder.  Periodically, one hummingbird chased another through the acacia tree, past the side of the house, looping and diving.

The squirrel came back, running across the top of the block wall.  Angel and Peanut tore after the squirrel, scaring the thrasher away, briefly, and the quail got a couple nibbles in.

An orange and black butterfly flitted across the yard and into the acacia tree. A gecko sunned itself, clinging to the vertical surface of the wall, escaping into the gaps in the blocks when frightened.  A grasshopper or locust buzzed and hopped across the lawn as a cloud of white flies danced over the grass.

A light breezed swayed the wind chimes, the deep clang of the sun moon chime counterpointed by the light ting of. the pipe chime.  The shirts hanging on the line rocked in the breeze, hangers twisting back and forth.

There is a rustle from under the china berry. A towhee scratches at fallen leaves, looking for sustenance. Its activity attracts the attention of the sparrows. Four or five hop around near the towhee.

The quail alternate standing on the block wall and pecking at the seed block ..It's hard to tell whether everyone is getting a turn at the block.  Sparrows hop in between the quail, pecking quickly at the block, before hopping away again.

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