Mountain-top hawks & ravens
On Saturday I ventured into new territory in the western part of Augusta County. First I did a little bit of hiking on the eastern slope of Elliott Knob, and then did the quick boardwalk loop at Augusta Springs, but not much was happening at either place. Then I headed south and climbed along a gravel road to the top of Little North Mountain, passing through Troxel Gap. It was higher than I expected and provided some great views. At the very top near some communications relay towers I came across a very loud group of Ravens that were feeding on a carcass, as well as a Red-tailed hawk. The drive home was very interesting, as I passed through the towns of McKinley and Middlebrook, and saw many picturesque farms. (Later that day, the Baltimore Ravens lost to the Indianapolis Colts, which was fine with me.) Here are the highlights:
- Downy woodpecker
- Golden-crowned kinglet
- Sharp-shinned hawk
- Red-tailed hawk
Speaking of hawks, I saw a Sharp-shinned hawk behind the Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad this morning, and it's probably the same one that has been menacing birds in our back yard for the past couple days.
Parrots in Brooklyn!?
* UPDATE: I was curious about the origin of that blog's name, and (after Googling) I found the poem "Friend In The Desolate Time" by Erik Johan Stagnelius at poemhunter.com. It concludes:
Therefore, rejoice, oh friend, and sing in the darkness of sorrow:
Night is the mother of day, Chaos the neighbor of God.