Saturday, October 12, 2013

Beautiful Boy

Yesterday I took a hike at a local wildlife refuge.  They have a visitors center where they keep a couple of birds that cannot be returned to the wild.  This American Kestral is 11 years old and he is a diminutive thing, and oh so beautiful.  Kestrals are the smallest falcons in America.

Click to enlarge for the real feel of this lovely fellow.  He was screeching at some birds that were flying by -- screeching right next to my ear.  What a great sound.

It was a perfect day, at one of my favorite hiking spots.  It's in Carmichael, which is a very wealthy area north of Sacramento, and you travel through these palatial neighbors before you get to the wildlife area.  Which is right next to a golf course.  Where they probably use all kinds of chemicals to keep the grass perfect. 

One of the many snags in the area, which is home to woodpeckers who have drilled so many holes in the wood it looks like a shooting gallery.  But there they store their acorns and keep their nests.

Many deer prints were about, and we actually spotted a fox running through the tall grass.  Sneaky little thing, darting his way along, keeping low so as not to be spotted.  Too fast and far away for a photo.  Drat.
I was with my friend J., who kayaks and also has a canoe.  We are planning a trip back with the canoe to spend the day on the river.

Life is Good. 

"In wilderness is the preservation of the world." HD Thoreau.  Well, I don't know about the world, but it does my soul a world of good.


  1. Love seeing that kestral. Such a gorgeous bird. I haven't seen one since we left Santa Cruz. Sure looks pretty there, Tara.

    1. you and Roger would love it there. maybe some day you'll make your way down off the mountain and I show you around!

  2. First of all, I LOVE THOREAU.
    Your photos are really exceptional. I've never tried, but I'd imagine wildlife photography is fairly complicated.
    When I move to SFO, can I tag along on some of your Wonderland journeys?

  3. SFO? San Francisco? What happened to LA? And ABSOLUTELY you may accompany me on my journeys - it would be a pleasure! Yeah, Thoreau was my teenage heartthrob/teacher/guru. He led a rather comfy life which allowed him to experiment and be a free thinker.

  4. Kestrals in the sun are among the most beautiful of birds. We saw them often in WI but not so often around here. Beautiful photographs.

  5. I've always said that ultimately, I want to end up in San Francisco...You no remember? L.A. may/may not be the exact next move, but is certainly coming soon.