Posted by: atowhee | January 26, 2023



The turkeys are feeling the longer days, carrying livelier, lascivious hormones. The males’ wattles are wagging beneath those masculine chins. Hens will whirl in small, tight circles around a bush. Three or as many as eight will chase around each with its neck toward a temporary enemy within the swirl. As if each is saying, “You don’t run, I’ll bite.” Then suddenly the motion stops, though it may quickly reverse and whirl back in the opposite direction. Also, there are duels, face-offs. Two turkeys with necks stretched as high as they’ll reach. Each beak pointedly pointed at the opponent. “I am taller and sharper than you.” So far, this is all show and theater, no feathers lost, no blood drawn. There are also occasional outbursts of wing-flapping pursuits. Could this be precursor to a feather-brained slug-fest? Nobody caught, nobody pecked ignobly.

I can’t go outside when the non-myrtle is around, it would vamoose. So, I must shoot through a less than pristine window. Note one shot shows the pale yellow on this bird’s throat. Could it be a hybrid of the two sub-species, or perhaps a molting kiddo?

A little more:

TASSEL TIME Then at Clark Creek Park today, the hazelnut is draped with its pre-leafing tassels, passels of tassels. Along the creek a Song Sparrow was in song, telling all the nearby juncos that he and his mate would be nesting here, thank you very much. The juncos could care less. Most will be heading up to conifers at 5000 feet, the few locals will cruise away from these scruffy little willows, ending up in the nearest stand of Doug-firs.

FENCE TOP FLARE-UP Click on any image for full screen.

Dolphin fans (animals, not football team), click here and enjoy!

Clark Creek Park, Marion, Oregon, US
Jan 26, 2023
6 species

Steller’s Jay  2
Common Raven  4
Black-capped Chickadee  1
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
American Robin  30
Song Sparrow  1     singing

954 Ratcliff Drive SE, Marion, Oregon, US
Jan 26, 2023. 21 species

Wild Turkey  21
Mourning Dove  14
Downy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  1
Steller’s Jay  1
California Scrub-Jay  5
American Crow  3
Black-capped Chickadee  2
Bushtit  20
Bewick’s Wren  1
European Starling  2
Varied Thrush  2
American Robin  1
House Finch  2
Lesser Goldfinch  1
American Goldfinch  20
Dark-eyed Junco  30
Golden-crowned Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  1
Spotted Towhee  1
Yellow-rumped Warbler  1     


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