Tuesday, October 15, 2019

BIRDS KEEP CHANGING

    In my last post the idea that bird species could be divided into several species caught some attention. So guess what? Another post on birds comes up.

    The example I used was the consideration by the International Ornithological Union (There other ornithological groups.) to  divide Canada geese into six different species. Many people are quite happy to go along with just Canada geese. For some people to divide geese into 6 groups is horrifying . However, scientific study shows that there are big differences within Canada geese. One of them is size. One group of geese is about 1/4 the size of other geese. We think of most Canada geese as having a standard color pattern. Not so.

     There are many other species of geese in the world but this is only happening to Canada geese as far as I know.

    Juncoes have been divided a few times. Sometimes species are put back as one species. There is an American crow and then a northwestern  crow which is very much smaller.

    So I am a birder ... and a bit nerdy, but a book I read a few years ago got me thinking! It's pretty hard to get me thinking.

    The book was called "To See Every Bird on Earth" written by Dan Koeppel. It's a neat book where Koeppel writes a history of his father but manages to write very much about birds. Koeppel's father was one of a few people in the world who try and see every bird in the world. They are obsessed with this mission. The go to all corners of the earth and spend no end of money.

    So Koeppel tells his father's life story and tells about birds and how the International Ornithological Union classifies and reclassifies birds.

    I found this a very interesting story and it opened my eyes to bird watching.

    So for anyone who's interested in birds  or science , this is a good read.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

A SUNNY WALK

     Yesterday , Oct 12, we had a nice sunny afternoon. After a discussion ???with the micro manager we decided to have lunch out. I didn't want lunch out. I wanted to walk on the trails all afternoon. Well, she said , "We'll go for lunch and then we'll go for a walk and then we both get what we want."  I'm not really sure of the logic in this one.

     Anyway, we went to one of my favorite places and there were thousands of Canada geese. They are getting ready to fly south but not right away. Canada geese will stay here as long as there is open water and the food isn't covered by snow. At this time the Canada geese are slowly moving south from the far north. There will still be some geese on the Mackenzie Delta.

    However, this is what I found yesterday.





     Oh yes, The bird naming people, the American Ornithologist's Union,  are discussing dividing Canada geese into six different species. Wait for it.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

ACCIDENTAL THANKSGIVING POST.

      I did not intend to write a post on Canadian Thanksgiving. However, John from John's Island emailed me and asked if the Canadian Thanksgiving was similar to the American Thanksgiving. I accidentally deleted John's email so that's why I'm posting on Canadian Thanksgiving.

      There, I got that off my chest!

       Our thanksgiving is quite similar to an American Thanksgiving. We have the traditional turkey dinner and all the trimmings. Potato, sweet potato, gravy, veggies, stuffing, aspic , a couple of salads, cranberries. So see the meal is similar.

    We have a few traditional football match ups to watch.

    Now traditions are changing and changing fast. In my case my kids are away. We've given up the whole turkey business because there's just the two of us but we still have the other part of the meal. So many people are separated and many people don't have the traditional meal. Some people don't cook that much and would never attempt the major feast.

    When I was still on the farm we had a huge meal but it had to fit in with the harvest. If we were still harvesting well no big meal. It was out on the combine. Then when harvesting was done we would have our big meal.

    The most important thing is to think about things and what we should be thankful for. We live in a very special country that tries to follow social justice for all.

Monday, October 7, 2019

BABY JACKS

      I walk about 2.5 km most evenings. Most evenings I never meet anybody but that's another post.

     On a fairly regular basis I see deer and jack rabbits.  It's close to rutting season for the mule deer. Through most of September I would see four bucks. They vary from a very senior buck to a young buck with spikes. I watch for them but sometimes I hear them before I see them. They are having little tussles and you hear the click of the antlers before you see the animals in the dark.



     I caught this doe in mid November not far from my house.

    At times I see jack rabbits every walk. What I've seen the last week has me asking many questions. I found three little bunnies that are 1/4 to 1/3 of the adult size. Miserable weather can kick in in October and we sometimes have winter weather by the beginning of November. Tonight a cold front has moved in. Our high tomorrow will be minus 2. Will these little guys reach maturity before winter sets in?


A two day old jack rabbit

An adult jack rabbit in my yard. They can weigh up to 10 lb.

Up close



    Now the first night I saw these three little guys in the road gutter beside the sidewalk. I told them that was a silly place to sit but they didn't listen. The doe was about 50 m away. One crossed the road. The next night I saw only two little guys. This time they ran into a housing development which is quite safe compared to a road. The next night they were in a dark and fairly large yard. They were chasing each other! I couldn't believe that they were playing just like puppies or kittens.

    Each night they seem to be more active and venturesome.

    I certainly hope they make it to the winter. Statistics aren't on their side. Only 30% make it to one year of age.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

SNOWY IMAGES

    This weekend , Sept 27, 28,  and 29 we had snowfall. We were very fortunate as we missed the very heavy snow. We had maybe one or two cm.  Further south the storm and snowfall were brutal. Waterton Lakes National Park, on the American border, had 95 cm of snow. They had the snowplows out. Calgary had about 30 cm of snow. It slowed a large city down and there was lots of street clearing.

     Black current, raspberry and gooseberry.
     Juniper
    Juniper and wet street
Snow formed on a juniper branch

Sunday, September 29, 2019

I FOUND THE SINGER AND MORE.

    In my last post I left by wondering about  a third singer to go along with Perry Como and Johnny Ray. I found him and  more.

    I remembered a radio show called the Breakfast Club. It seemed to me the singer I was looking for was on the Breakfast Club. I found the Breakfast Club and right away I found the singer I was looking for...Johnny Desmond. Desmond had an active career in music, movies , television and show business. I was happy to find Johnny Desmond.

    After the Breakfast Club there was a 5 minute segment called Morning Devotions. I remember the theme music was from the cello and very calm and soothing. I've always like the cello. Now I don't remember any thing about the Morning Devotions. Hey, why don't I look it up?

    Now what I accidentally bumped into was more interesting. I remember listening to the Breakfast Club most mornings when I was a kid at home. It came on at 7: 15 AM for a half an hour. It had music and comedy and I'm not sure what else. I tried to listen to one or two of them and found the sound and quality very poor. I think the Breakfast Club started in 1933 with emcee Don McNiel. It ran into the early 60's.

    So does anybody else remember Johnny Desmond? Does anybody else remember the Breakfast Club.? It was also called the Swift's Breakfast Club when Swifts began sponsoring it.

    Oh , there was a comedian...Sam something, who I really liked. I have to go back and find this guy and see why I really liked him.

WHAT'S GOING ON?

       A few days ago In my reading list a blog seemed to have dumped all their posts at one time.

     I wanted to read and comment on some of the blogs I follow. They were not in the usual place. I had to go to my reading list and pick one blog at a time and see if they had posted. Then I could read ti post and comment.

     Did anyone else have this experience?