Archive | December 26, 2013

The Druids took a Christmas walk

My sister and I took a walk through the Sepulveda Wildlife Refuge yesterday. It’s just us since our cousins seem to have abandoned us for some reason so we did what we wanted since the weather was beautiful. It was around 80 degrees and perfect for a winter walk. I did forget it was the Christmas bird count so there were lots of birders with binoculars and lists.

We go out there to see the America White Pelicans because they are only out there for a short while before they head off to wherever they go from here to breed. They are big birds. Second only in wingspan to the California condors in North America. They come up about to my waist when they are out of the water. They are amazingly beautiful. I knew it was going to be a good day when the first thing I saw when I turned in to the drive was a Great White Egret no where near the water just standing there like it was on watch. It was a day for white birds since the Snowy Egrets and the Night Herons were out too.

Usually the banks of the island the birds are on is covered with turtles but there were very few. The rest may be in hibernation since it has been in the 30’s and lower a few times in the last few weeks. Too many people to see bunnies.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_White_Pelicannd

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkey_Vulture

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Night_heron

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double-crested_Cormorant

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neotropic_Cormorant

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wigeon

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada_Goose

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mallard

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bufflehead

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Least_Grebe

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double-crested_Cormorant

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Egret

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snowy_Egret

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osprey

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harris%27s_Hawk

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Coot

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Gull

There were others I still need to identify. I think we saw a shrike but it flew by so fast I wasn’t sure. It amazes me that there are so many druid blogs but hardly anyone talks about actually going outside and being in the natural world. How can you be a druid and not love to be outside at least some of the time? It’s the cheapest high there is even if it’s just a walk around the block. Maybe I’m spoiled because LA is virtually surrounded on all sides with wildlife refuges and botanical gardens but even in our apartment yard we’ve had hawks and ravens and crows and lots of visiting small birds. We have squirrels and opossums. One I thought was a cat asleep on our front step and made the mistake of swatting its butt when it didn’t leave when I opened the door. Startled the heck out of both us, I’m sure and btw it was very soft.

I spent one winter working here up in the snow and was still outside watching deer and following the quails tracks across the snow. Taking the kids on nature rides through the snow. There really isn’t any excuse for not being out in nature if you call yourself a druid. Just saying. What’s weather like? Are there shapes in the clouds? Can you see the moon right now or tonight? Was there a red sky at morning or last night? You should know these things? Open your eyes.