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Breakfast Delayed

Red TAil Hawk

Radnor Reflections, December 6, 2011

As mad as this red tail hawk looks, there is an equally frightened, and grateful, squirrel below it.

It rained buckets yesterday, and it was still misting as we walked. I once heard an old country Tennessean describe a light rain as a dry drizzle, and I’m sure that description fits the weather this morning. It was gray and still, when suddenly the peace was interrupted with a powerful thunk. A bit alarmed, I turned to see the squirrel shooting like a rocket into a hollow log. I couldn’t imagine how it might have made such a loud noise. It wasn’t the squirrel, however, but the hawk, sitting on the ground at the precise point where the squirrel had been. The hawk had a hard time accepting the fact that his breakfast had escaped, but finally flew off.  I saw the red feathers in its tail this time.  The squirrel will probably be in that log for a good long time.  I know I would be!

Frosted Leaves

Frost on Leaves

Radnor Reflections, December 5, 2011

The bright autumn colors are spectacular, but the winter’s muted artistry is equally appealing.

Frost Patterns

Frost Patterns

Radnor Reflections, December 4, 2011

Frost is a graffiti artist!

December Begins

Honeysuckle Berries

Radnor Reflections, December 1, 2011

This day at Radnor was made to order for the first of December. Deep frost coated every leaf and branch with an outline of icy white crystals. Frosted seed pods on plants looked like cotton candy on sticks beside the trail. Bright sun burned  the fog off the lake, sending it in waves over the spillway along with excess water from the past several days’ rain. Mr. Redtail Hawk sat on a branch and enjoyed the morning, or maybe he was waiting for the fog to clear so he could enjoy breakfast. The honeysuckle (reviled by militant gardeners) that lines Otter Creek Rd at the eastern end was sugar coated with frost, glowing with an inner iridescence against the gray of the fog and lake. No apologist for the disparaged honeysuckle, I still see beauty in it, and would rather fall into an invasive honeysuckle bush than a native poison ivy patch.

Beam

Horse

Radnor Reflections, November 30, 2011

This is Beam. We’ve never seen him at Radnor before. The two legs behind Beam belong to Steve, Radnor’s head honcho. We see Steve a lot, but always before with a head, body and arms, in addition to legs. Beam comes for crowd control on weekends, which is why we have never seen him. We do not come on weekends. Period. We had been discussing turkeys while on our walk, a logical subject the week after Thanksgiving, so we asked Steve if he knew anything about them. He began by asking how much we wanted to know, and ended with the command to go and write a book. I hope I didn’t use the words ‘herd of turkeys’ at any time during the conversation. Beam was pretty anxious to get on with his duties, and said he didn’t have time to pose for a decent picture. Just like William, but more polite.

Bare Bones Beauty

Lakescape

Radnor Reflections, November 29, 2011

When I finally got back to walking this morning, after two weeks of sneezing and coughing, I found that there was nothing left of fall at Radnor. Not a trace. Wind and rain had stripped it of leaves and color. The thing is that it looks beautiful in a different way, and not at all like it has been on its death bed for the past two weeks. I should have been taking Radnocillin.

Happy Thanksgiving

Turkeys in trees

Radnor Reflections, November 24, 2011

Who says turkeys can’t fly? Maybe the wing action is specific to the November need of the turkey to make itself scarce? They’re safe if they stay within the preserve, assuming the days of poachers at Radnor are a thing of the past.

I love last year’s picture of the turkey face-off. These were puffed up, strutting and gobbling, with their heads bobbing forward and back like, “King Tut, DA, da, DA, da, DA da, DA.  Such funny birds.

Turkeys

Turkey face-off

Personally, I prefer Honey Baked Ham to turkey on Thanksgiving.  We don’t see any pigs on our Radnor walks.