Who’s On First?

In the universe of Bad Karma, I’m apparently near the front of the “let’s make life a little more nasty than nice” line. I really did hope to start blogging regularly again. Unfortunately, that requires both a working computer and a working ISP. Since last Friday, both of our computers have been wonky, and both of our ISPs have been mostly down.

I’m viewing it as just another example of How The Universe Enjoys Picking On Me.

Harumpf.

In hopes that both problems are now resolved to the point of limping along, I thought I’d give a bunny update.

BB the Bunny

BB is not only fine, she’s grown into a favorite of mine. She’s definitely from Stewart’s lineage: slightly smaller than average, with the patchy coloration from his line and quirky as can be. She also is easy to pick out from the horde (yes, we have a horde of bunnies–which is somewhat more than a litter and somewhat less than a thundering herd) as she has a little white crescent-shaped mark on her forehead. We’ve noticed that many of our bunnies have this as babies, but BB is the only one who hasn’t had hers shed out as she grew.

Michael asked me last week if perhaps Stewart had passed along a gene for “overly friendly wild bunny” to his descendents. I’m thinking maybe so…

Our bunnies are typical wild bunnies around neighbors and strangers that come into our yard, but are perfectly happy to hop all around us, to the point where we really do have to shoo them out of the way when we are doing things.

I told BB last week, when I was poking around under our spruce tree and she appeared, that she was supposed to hop away from the scary humans when they were doing something in the yard, not to hop TO me to investigate what I am doing. She yawned.

YAWNED.

Then she proceeded to groom herself and finally hopped away several moments later to nibble on a patch of late clover.

Newest Young Bunny

We’ve had several other batches of bunnies arrive, and one of the latest also has the “friendly” gene in spades. I’ve named him “Dude,” as he is the most laid-back yard bunny to date. He’s so reluctant to move from “his” spot when I come across him that I’ve actually had to reach down and threaten to nudge his little rump to get him out of the way. As he hops off, he clearly slings over his shoulder, “Hey, Dude, what’s the deal? That was my spot!” Hence, his name.

We have one other, of the five originally in BB’s litter, who has also remained with us. We call her “Snug” as she likes to snuggle herself down into the grass. She has “radar” ears that are constantly moving from one direction to another, and has a particular fondness for Michael. She will sit on the stoop of his shop when he’s inside it, or snuggle down in the pathway from the house to the shop, wait there and then refuse to move when he appears. Me she just tolerates.

Most of the other bunnies from this year’s crop have hopped to other abodes, or been lost to predators when they made mistakes that left them vulnerable. If they hadn’t, we would be awash in bunnies by this point!

In terms of other regulars for this summer, we’ve had a redtail hawk that checks out the yard regularly, to the great consternation of the furry folk and the songbirds. We also have a Coopers hawk that flies through the yard at about shoulder height, scaring the bejabbers out of me every single time, and has even roosted on the back of one of our lawn chairs. The great horned owls are back, too, giving concerts, and with the oncoming winter I see bald eagles often.

And lest I forget to mention them, the Canada geese are starting to fly through in flocks that number in the hundreds, landing on the river to form gatherings of thousands of geese nightly. Two days ago a small flock flew so close to the house that I could hear the beat of their wings, and see individual feathers.

Oh, and one other thing… it’s already been snowing. Hasn’t stuck, yet, but it’s truly snowed–several times now.

That doesn’t bode well for a nice easy winter.

“Bzzzzzzz…” or was that “Zzzzzz?”

Honkers Ahoy!

In one week, our temperatures have dropped from unseasonable highs to chiller-than-normal lows. We’ve had some heavy frosts, and the first of the tens of thousands of geese that will migrate through are flying overhead.

Sleepy Bee #1

Early in morning, the remaining blooms on our flowers are full of sleepy bumblebees, one to a flower.

Sleepy Bee #2

The bees have spent their night huddled inside the blossoms, caught far from their nests when dusk arrived the previous evening, and unable to fly safely home until the sun once again warms the chilled air.

Sleepy Bee #3

Winter is coming.

Duck, Duck, Goose!

Flaps Up!  Geese Coming In For A Landing!

As I write this, Canada geese are flying over our house, so close to the ground at times that the actual swoosh of individual wingbeats are heard if one stands outside. They’re talking in honks and sqwonks as they fly, the sound so loud that it’s the rural equivalent of a big city rush hour traffic jam. We get occasional flocks of ducks passing over, too, but during migration, every night at dusk, tens of thousands of geese gather together on a bend of the river that lies across the street from our home.

As I’m the ever inquisitive sort, when I watch the geese (as with everything else) I have questions. Why don’t they ever crash into each other? How do they fly together in such huge flocks without the goose equivalent of air traffic control? Who decides which path they’ll take, and how far they’ll fly before stopping to rest? What are they saying?

Why did one fly into Fabio’s face a few years back?

Aha! Finally! A question with an answer! That was human error, according to Fabio himself. As he tells it,

“This roller coaster went by a pond where there are hundreds of geese that nest there and this was opening day so these geese didn’t have time to get out of the way, and when the roller coaster hit the water they killed several geese. I heard they were having major problems with the geese. They spent millions of dollars on this roller coaster and they didn’t put nets around the coaster to protect the geese or people. They closed the ride fast. So it wasn’t a case of some random goose that flew by, they built the ride right through a geese habitat. You would see geese flying through the path of the roller coaster, they’re migrating birds. In the winter the geese weren’t there so they just built right across the geese’s area so when the spring came around, they had that problem with geese getting in the way of the ride. Had it been a child that had been hit that hard the child might have been killed.”

Hello…? what’s wrong with picture?

sqwONK! THUD! PooFT!

*feathers fly everywhere*

Even if there wasn’t any danger to the roller coaster’s occupants, and you didn’t care about fatalities to the geese, didn’t the park’s developers consider that it might be a tad disturbing to go whizzing in a roller coaster through a pond filled with dead geese?

“Look Mommy! Dead birdies!”

“Eeewwwwwwwww!”

What were they thinking?

Oopsie – there I go, asking questions again!

Questions! I always have questions!

I wonder… do geese ever ask questions?

Sqwonk!