A good day for a hike


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The sky was a little overcast, but the temperature was perfect for a hike in the Reelfoot Wildlife Refuge.  Along the way, signs of spring were intermingled with the leaves of the past autumn.  The sound of birds chirping and an owl hooting could be heard in the distance.  As we passed a stranger on the path, his greeting summed up my feelings perfectly — “It doesn’t get much better than this!”  No, it certainly doesn’t.  🙂

“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.”  ~Unknown

Tufted Titmouse

A small energetic bird, the Tufted Titmouse tends to evade my camera more often than not.  With a clear echoing voice, it flits through the bushes in our backyard.  Then, unexpectedly, it drops to the feeder to snatch a sunflower seed before hastily retreating to a secluded branch to crack open its prize.

“Ambition is the path to success.  Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.”  ~Bill Bradley

Look up!

As I was standing and looking out over the lake, I felt a little disappointed at the apparent lack of wildlife in the immediate area.  Then I heard a passing kayaker tell one of his companions to “look up”.  As I lifted my eyes, I was amazed to see a large flock of white pelicans quietly soaring right above my head.  Such a beautiful and graceful sight that I would have otherwise missed if I hadn’t overheard the suggestion to look up.

“… How often we miss God’s treasures
Just because we don’t raise our eyes.
By keeping our narrow focus
We blunder and miss the prize …”
~Joyce Johnson

Mourning Doves

Mourning doves are commonly seen sitting in our pine trees or searching on the ground for sunflower seeds that have fallen from the feeders.  They often have favorite perches where they sit, and from which their distinctive coos can be heard.  However, they are easily startled, and take off like a shot.  Their initial flight produces a sharp whistling sound, followed by the gentle flutter of their soft wings.

Time, as he passes us, has a dove’s wing,
  Unsoil’d, and swift, and of a silken sound.
~William Cowper


Carolina wren

The Carolina wren is small in size, but mighty in energy and attitude.  It has a way of making its presence known.  With lively chatter, it darts to and away from the feeders, seldom lingering in one place for more than a few seconds at a time.  I always enjoy catching a glimpse of this spirited little bird when it is hanging about.

“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”  ~Winston Churchill