Background Switcher (Hidden)

A Prayer to the Nature Gods, Granted

Monday, December 3, 2018

 Written in the middle of Ohio's whitetail gun season last week, when I always feel anxious for my friends in the woods:

Cruel Nature Gods, while you're sparing my friends, pass over this spike buck who wandered in to the feeders.

He's too young to be Ellen's son, Pinky, who's probably sporting six or eight points by now. I don't know who he is. He's just small and sweet.

He bears more than a passing resemblance to Buffy, who I am still waiting for. She should have shown up by now. I'm having another Half-ear Smalley moment with Buffy. As Ellen's companion for many years, Buffy's got to be at least 12 now, and I suppose one fine winter she simply won't appear.  I already miss her stocky, short-legged form.

If you can't be with the ones you love, love the ones you're with...Please deem this red-breasted nuthatch and his adorable female companion too small for the hawk to bother with.

Male red-breasted nuthatch-black cap.
They amuse me no end when they chitter at me first thing in the morning. They get so excited when I go rattle the feed bins. Then they flit all around me tittering as I fill the feeders. I adore them. Chatty little companionable things!

Female--gray cap.

And, Nature Gods, please keep this sweetly inquisitive young female yellow-bellied sapsucker from braining herself on one of my unprotected windows. At least around here, the favorite pastime of sapsuckers is flying pell-mell into plate glass. She's bounced off my studio window netting several times since she showed up. I always laugh when they do it--trying so hard to kill themselves, only to be foiled again.

She knows there must be food around because all the birds seem to be eating something. But she has yet to figure out the peanut feeder. She did find some peanut scraps in the cracks of the post she's sitting on. The nuthatches and redbellies process their peanuts there. She liked those. I hope she'll key in before too long. Other sapsuckers have, but it's been 20 years.

I laughed out loud when this titmouse landed as I was shooting as if to show her his sunflower seed.

It's a sunflower seed. They're good. Instead of pecking morosely at the arbor vitaes all day, you should try them, you silly gherkin.

I keep sending this bird mind pictures of delicious roasted peanuts. She's staring right down at Jemima's special feeder, which is always stocked with peanuts and Zick Dough. But she Just. Can't. Make. The. Connection.  Hanging out in the yard, 20' away, is a lovely peanut feeder you can land on and eat to your heart's content.

Don't you know that everyone who comes to Indigo Hill gets fed?  Pfft! I give up.

I have been working so steadily to finish my book that I prepared this post and forgot I'd done it. And while it was simmering away, hunting season came and went. I was locked in the house for six days, and thank the Lord it rained and was absolutely miserable the whole time. On the last day (Sunday Dec. 2), the sun came out like an extravagant apology, and of course the shots were ringing out all around, because now in Ohio we hunt on Sundays, over bait no less. So I spent most of the day puttering happily around the yard and greenhouse. I did all the things you can't do if it's cold and raining. The light was beautiful and I washed and hung out three loads of bedding.

This morning I awoke to find the gray flannel had closed over us again. Another dreary day. But wait! there was something out in the meadow. This is not an accident. It's the first morning after hunting season and you can bet the deer know it!

 The light was so flat and dull I actually didn't even see two of them at first. If you click on this photo, you'll see the one farthest in back is really beautiful--big square throat bib, strong features, large eyes, dark smooth coat. I can't be absolutely sure, because it's too far to see her ear notch, but I think it's my lovely Jolene, and I think the medium-sized doe to the right is her two-year-old daughter. With any luck, they're both with fawn from one of the beautiful bucks I've seen on the place this fall (more on them later!)

Who's the small doe to the left? When she raised her head, I knew in an instant. This is not a young animal. This is someone I know.

BUFFY Buffybuffybuffy Hello my love!!
Click on the photos and you'll see her all-red tail and the buff cast to her brows and coat. But it's by her build I recognize her first.
 If ever there were a textbook Buffy photo this is it. She's a short-legged thick little gal
and a bit on the squinty side.
Her left eye looks fine. I was SO glad to see my Buffy.

Hadn't seen her since March 8, 2018, a day with light.  The light will return. Buffy did.

All hail the Nature Gods, and the resilience of a little doe who knows where to hide. 


SO THRILLED FOR YOU!!! (And for the deer; of COURSE for the deer!)

To borrow a Zick phrase - the weather during the hunting was so very craptastic- I hoped the deer had benefited

I'll hail them along with you. Did you name that doe Jolene after the Dolly Parton song?

@hart indeed I did. She is beautiful enough to steal any buck from his lady.

[Back to Top]