I cleaned up my eagle perch this past weekend. Hated to see it go. I liked Bald Eagles handy.
Tall dead Sycamore in river bottom land right below Big House. Three or four open limbs on top, perfect perches from which local Bald Eagles could drop onto small varmints and new carrion unimpeded. One of several such perches within sight of Big House, but it was nearest.
High wind got it. I noticed it down more than a week ago. Down and shattered. Broken off fifteen feet above the ground. Left a small hole in the skyline.
Last Saturday Kubota and I moved broken perch chunks to a nearby rotting wood pile. I’d burn it, but too many government rules and regulations to worry through if smoke rises. I’ll just wait for high water to carry it down to neighbors on lower Cacapon.
Six Cardinals. Red male Cardinals in and about Big house’s bird feeder. I suppose they all had mates, but the glare off all that red distracted me.
A couple of years ago I wrote about lack of Cardinals in February. I’d seen none and wondered where they were. One or two around are normal, but that year I’d seen none. This year I saw six same day all in sight at same time.
One occupied the feeder and fought off all comers. King of the Feeder I suppose. Five were distributed among a French Lilac, two Maples and a sort of trashy clump of shrubbery nearby. While I watched several took turns at being King, some lasted longer than others.
I think they’ve stuck around. I haven’t seen all at once again, but I still have more Cardinals coming in regularly than normal.
Scoot, my cat has noticed them too. I haven’t caught Scoot with a Cardinal, but she has had several other little birds. She caught at least one in that trashy clump. I watched her act like a plain old black lump in the bottom of the bush, then spring up like a feline rocket to grab a small unsuspecting gray and white bird. I didn’t see her eat it, but I think she did.
Speaking of Scoot. She’s learning to become a nuisance. Learned to open the office bathroom door both directions.
She often joins me there for my morning potty stop. Hops right up into my lap while I sit. I’ve learned to keep my jeans up and buttoned while she’s there. Sharp claws hanging onto bare legs can be startling. Makes pottying a little awkward, but it’s sort of peaceful/enjoyable petting a purring cat at such moments.
She’d learned to open the door from outside simply by pushing against it when it was unlatched. Several days ago I sat in office contemplating and watched Scoot push the bathroom door open. She went in and door fell shut behind her. I resolved to wait and see what she’d do about that.
A little scratching, a small “Meow”, a black paw slipped under the door, claws down. Paw reappeared several times, claws turned up. She hooked the door and pulled. Not far enough. It fell shut again when she released it. Paw appeared again, hooked door and pulled it open. Open far enough for her to jump up and step through looking pleased with herself.
When I’m on the potty, I’ve learned to chase her out before I stand up. The other morning I turned around and caught her with front paws up on the seat I’d just vacated concentrating on toilets contents swirling and disappearing following my flush. I grabbed Scoot by the scruff and ejected her when she reached in a paw and tried to hook out a chunk before it disappeared.