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Friday, April 11, 2014

Whatever floats her boat... er, her nest

After running a couple of errands today, I was a couple of minutes from home when I passed a vacant corner lot. I caught a glance of what I thought was a sitting duck in my periferal vision. Curious, I did a U-turn and drove back to see what the heck had chosen such a curious spot for a nest.  I took the shot below with my iphone, Zeiss binoculars and a handy $15 thingamajig that holds the two together.

The tiny red arrow points to the sitting, so-called duck
The bird in question was no duck, nor was it a chicken as I next guessed. It turned out to be a hen turkey.  She settled on this crazy spot, that is maybe five miles from the American River where one might normally expect a turkey to set up housekeeping.

It's a difficult job but she's dedicated

She seems... annoyed. Is it something I said?
UPDATE:  I took the photo above on March 31st. I've been by to check on her several times since then, when I happen to be in her vicinity. She's still setting. Today her back feathers were poofy so she looked like a basketball. It was a warm afternoon so I know her feathers were raised to let heat escape her body. But when I drove up she lowered her feathers too look smaller so I had to slink away so she would not become overheated due to my presence. Wish I could set up a lean-to for her. For that matter, wish I could give her food and water too but sometimes a human has to just mind her own turkey business and leave well enough alone. Good luck with your eggs & your family-to-be old girl.

At least a half dozen empty eggshells

Final Update, May 2nd: Having just returned from Arizona, even before I picked up my held mail, I trekked to see how my turkey friend was faring. Success! The hen is gone, and all that is left are at least a halfdozen eggshells, I was able to count through the fencing.

I don't know where the little hen went to with her new family, but I certainly wish them all the best of luck, and NO effing cats. 

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