The other day I was hanging out with the horses. I take them out to graze every day. Their paddocks are brown, and the hay fields are still green. Mr. Green Jeans has finally agreed with me, that the paddocks need to be extended, til we can get the present ones to stay green into the winter!!
I enjoy hanging out with the horses and watching the world go by. Mr. Green Jeans lasts about a minute, maybe 20, and is already thinking of other things he could be doing!!
So, the plan is to fence in another large paddock, across the front of the barn, where orchard grass and timothy has been planted and grows seemingly forever. Then, the old paddocks will be seeded and reseeded, til they start to grow. It seems a shame to have to horses confined, even tho their paddocks are very large, when there are acres of green grass surrounding them!!! Altho, the acres are what feeds them in the winter months, and makes some money to afford these equines their cushy lifestyles!!!
While communing with the horses, and brushing the mud out of their winter coats, I gaze up at the sky from time to time. This unseasonably warm day, there was a small flock of 11 or 12 vultures, soaring on the thermals above. The whole time I watched them, they never flapped their wings, just gracefully floated in ever widening circles. For such an unattractive bird, they are grace on wings when in the sky.
There was a combination of turkey vultures and black vultures, with a slightly smaller outline in the crowd. Included in the group, was a hawk, about 1/3 smaller than the buzzards, joining in on the fun of soaring in the warm skies. They did not object to him being there, they were just enjoying floating. This went on for about 20 minutes, and as they went farther afield, the hawk looked over his shoulder at the crowd and with a dip of his body, redirected his “float” to the mountain. Still no wing flapping, he continued to soar to the mountains, til he was nothing more than a dot in the sky.
The vulture flock dispersed, and within a few minutes, I was surprised to see several more flocks of vultures emerging from beyond the trees. There were groups of 20 and 30! I would guess between 75 and 90 vultures were floating in the sky! This aerial circus only lasted about 10 minutes, and they all disappeared over the tree line. Fortunately, no one pooped while I was standing below looking up at the show!!! LOL I did see a couple, a little while later, in the top of a dead tree, wings outstretched, in an eerie pose. They do that to absorb the warmth of the sun.
I can never get pictures of them – they don’t allow you to get too close-they usually fly away, or defecate and fly away-and believe me, you do NOT want to get hit by that!!!
A day or so ago, I happened to catch a couple of vultures standing by the river. They flew to the trees, when they saw me approach. I thought they were just getting a drink. As I walked along, I noticed a skeleton on the other bank of the river. They were feasting on a deer, and were leery of me, but were not going to get too far away from their meal. The river was too deep, because of recent rain, for me to get on the other side to check out the deer. I’m guessing, a hunter shot and lost sight of his prey. This poor little guy died at the river’s edge. Vultures are nature’s clean up committee, always on the lookout for their next meal.
I went down 2 days later, to check on their progress, but the rain had caused the river to swell, and the carcass had apparently washed downstream.
Ugly as they are, the vulture serves a definite purpose in nature. I enjoy seeing them overhead. Here are the few pix I could capture of the ones by the river.
All is well, and unseasonably warm, at Mountain Meadows this Sunday morning……………….