This was forwarded to me by a friend and it is loaded with good information and a few things you might not want to hear ... but you will have heard it by the time you figure out what it is you might not want to hear, so be warned. I do take exception to the fact that this person is petting and handling his owls as you would a pet which is not a safe thing to do and not to be taken as the appropriate way to treat an owl. The fact that they are little fuzzy puffballs as babies is why they fall pray to well meaning humans who think they will make adorable pets ... I can't tell you how many of these owls end up living their life in captivity because of this ill fated choice on the part of unknowing adults or children. So please take in the good information here and leave the rest behind. Enjoy!
This is a sad story, but one with a happy ending. I was outside with Izzi (my dog) and I heard the painfully familiar thud-plop sound on the deck. Yes, sure enough, a little bird lay clumped on the deck after hitting my window. I followed my usual routine ... got a paper bag, lined it with a paper towel , then after putting on a glove, I gently lifted the little fellow and placed him in the bag. (These are the instructions we were given in a Rehab seminar years ago). It wasn't until I was able to look at him in the bag that I realized that this was not a bird I had ever seen before.
He looked like the shape of a Nut Hatch ... but the color was wrong. What could it be?
I then made my call to Fellow Mortals the wonderful wildlife rehab facility in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. They take a message and then call you back. As I was waiting for the call, I heard the little bird jumping around in the bag. I thought perhaps he had just bumped his head enough to put him out so, as I usually do, I took the bag outside and opened it to see if he would fly away. He didn't, so I lifted him out on my finger and took some pictures in hopes of possibly identifying him. As he never attempted to fly, I knew he needed to go to rehab.
When I got to Fellow Mortals they told me he was a Philadelphia Vireo ... a migrating bird on his way to South America. The good news is he had no broken bones and was perfectly flight capable except he had ruptured two air sacs and wouldn't fly until they had reinflated. They estimated two weeks of TLC and he would be on his way again. I have the option of getting a report back on him in one month ... which I will definitely do.
The Philadelphia Vireo spends most of it's time in the upper leafy portions of trees so they are rarely seen. I was privileged, though not in a way I would prefer, to meet this little fella and I am so relieved that he will be fine. Like I said ... a Happy Ending :)
P.S. I have learned from Fellow Mortals that whenever a bird hits the window he should be taken in because, even though he may seem fine and is able to fly away, they may develop swelling in the brain and eventually not make it. So in the future that will also be part of my routine:)(What to do when you find and injured animal/bird)
Alas, another chicken ... or should I say Rooster. This is not the starting point, this is the first of the finished Rooster pictures. I started with another chicken statue in a Garden Center. I painted it, extracted it and placed it on a background that was a previous MOM post.
From there I started running it through different filters ...starting with Fresco.
This one is Poster Edges ... always have to have Poster Edges. It is my favorite most of the time .... But
It wasn't enough ... I needed more, so I put it through Threshold and had a whole new playground :)
I added an orange wash , some bokah, a little light then the Film Grain Filter ...
And finally I went to Foto Flexor. I started playing with my options, but forgot to write down what I did so all I have is the final picture ... which, I have to say, I am pleased with ...
As I was standing in my back yard, I saw a pair of Great Blue Herons fly by ... one very big one and one smaller one. They had no more than passed when the larger bird did a quick turn around and slipped into to upper branches of my big old Oak Tree. The smaller bird kept going ( I am thinking either a male or a juvenile) not realizing he had been deserted. She sat up in the tree for quite awhile before leaving in the opposite direction. So, what's the story here? Care to guess?
What red blooded woman doesn't dream about her favorite leading man. I am not a big movie buff, but I never miss a Johnny Depp movie. He is not only drop dead gorgeous (my opinion), but he is talented, clever and humorous. I love that he stays true to himself and never gets taken in by all of the glitz of the movie industry. Anyway this is what popped into my head when I saw the prompt "Show Biz". Never to old to enjoy a good looking man :)
This started out as a water piece. I did add orange then ran it through a filter and this is what came out ... not much to my liking, but interesting none the less.
By adding another water source and decreasing the opacity, I came out with this ... a little more to my liking.
A little lighting effect and I get this ... for the better? I'm not sure, but I think it's time to move on ...
to an orangified window :)
Once through the Poster edges filter ...
and again through the Smudge Stick filter.
I feel like this is a weak offering, maybe because it took only minimal effort. Though I have to admit the more I look at them, the more I like them. Hopefully, next week will be an improvement. I excuse myself because I had a minor surgery on Friday and minor as it was, it has zapped my energy. So hope you were able to find something to enjoy ...
The Turkey Vulture is the only regular vulture visitor in our area. They used to be a rare sighting, but now they are common. Seeing a Turkey Vulture floating, souring, rocking, swooping and climbing is the harbinger of spring (not death as some people fear) and that makes them a welcome sight ... I have to admit, I get excited when I see them return from their winter hiatus to warmer country.
The Turkey Vulture ( Cathartes aura, which means either “golden
purifier” or “purifying breeze.” ) is a New World Vulture which some believe is more closely related to the Stork than the Raptors, but is still classified as a Raptor. The Turkey Vulture shares in all of the characteristics that I listed on my Vulture Awareness Day post last Saturday (here) if you are interested in the fun details. They however do set themselves apart because they have the best sense of smell of all of the Vultures which is what they use to locate carrion. The part of their
brain responsible for processing smells is particularly large which heightens their ability to detect odors. They can detect just a few parts per
trillion—allowing them to to follow a scent as far away as ten miles or find dead animals below a forest canopy. Other Vultures often follow the Turkey Vulture around because they know they are the best at finding food. Some scientists are looking into the possibilty of using them to locate bodies in missing person cases.
The Turkey Vulture is shy and is often bullied off his food by other Vultures or carrion eating predators. When eating in their own group, one eats at a time , chasing the others off and making them wait their turn. They are also sun lovers, often seen standing erect with their wings spread
in the sun, presumably to warm up.
It's time to talk about Junior. Junior was one of two resident Turkey Vultures at the Rehab Facility where I worked for years. Senior was the bigger of the two and never habituated to his human care takers so he was not used as an education bird.
Juniors story is a sad, but all too frequent story. He ate carrion that had been left behind by a hunter ... it contained lead shot. He developed lead poisoning and because he was so sick he couldn't migrate when it turned cold. When he was found and brought to us, in additon to the lead poisoning, he had frost bite in both feet. We treated him and he survived, but he lost most of his toes and talons on both feet. Obviously he couldn't be released to the wild.
Junior was wild and anyone who had to retrieve him from his mew knew that he remained wild. With hissing and occasionally vomit, he would jump from perch to perch to avoid you ... then after a bit, he would sit and allow us to put his jesses on and take him on glove. He had became habituated to his care givers and once on the glove he would interact with us (Turkey Vultures are social in the wild). He was actually playful and couldn't resist a good game of tug of war or just snatching at the toys we had for him.
His favorite was Tug of War ... because he always won :)
As soon as you walked out into the sun with him on glove, he would spread his wings wide and you could almost see the pleasure on his face.
(I know, anthropomorphising again).
Anybody who knew Junior learned to love and respect the Turkey Vulture. I still miss him and I think if I could choose my totum, it would be a Turkey Vulture in his honor. He will always remain close to my heart ...
Junior was a favorite in the education programs ... especially with the young boys who loved that he would vomit on his enemies and urinate on his feet. "Gross!" they would say, with a big smile on their face ... Boys will always be boys :)
In the winter, his mew was heated and during the day we would let him come in and sun in one of the classrooms.
The hole, that goes all the way through allows, the air to pass through. The Turkey vultur has special receptors in the lining of his nose that allows him to smell the unique sulphurous chemical compounds of decaying meat.
Junior was a handsome boy in my eyes ... I hope you have learned from him and found a new respect for the wonderful Turkey Vulture ... He cleans your world and prevents the spread of disease.