For The Birds

Turkey Vulture, With Dinner

Happy National Bird Day!

Did you know, the New Jersey state bird is the American Goldfinch.

While I do see them a lot here in Upper Freehold, what I see more more of is the turkey vulture, a.k.a Nature’s Clean Up Crew.

Circling the skies overhead, perched on roofs and fence rails, they are constant aerial custodians.

Peregrines are the skill players, Goldfinches are the divas.

Alas, the turkey vulture is the lineman in the trenches, being valuable to the ecosystem, but doing it all ugly.

So here’s to ya, lowly turkey vulture! Enjoy your day!

//

I’ve pretty much put the bike in the garage for the winter. I flatted a few weeks ago, never got it fixed yet. But besides that, it’s cold and windy and I hate to ride in the cold and wind.

I also hate to run in the cold and wind. Frankly, I don’t love running even in perfect weather.

But, to keep moving an active, I’ve started walking – rambling, as I call it – a lot more. Nearly five miles everyday.

Not all at once, that would take to long. But I’ve been getting out for about an hour in the morning, and that puts a good dent in the steps take goal (10,000 a day). Couple that for a some walks around the block with Bo and Quinn and I’ve been getting it done.

I’m walking a lot of the same places I rode – the Union Transportation Trail, a six-mile stretch of gravel that crosses through a couple of towns; the trails in the nearby woods; the lanes at Assunpink Wildlife Recreation Area, one of my favorite areas here in Upper Freehold.

Most of the time, my Fuji XT3 is with me. Sometimes just my phone camera. Either way, I’m capturing what I see.

Pheasant Talon, UTT Trail

New Year’s Day, I went out Assunpink. My MP3 player was loaded with a Behind The Shot podcast, and I was ready to go. (Because of the rambling, I’m listening to more podcasts. That’s why you’re seeing more podcast links in my Visual Week In Review posts.)

But as I pulled Beauford the 4Runner into the parking lot, I saw I wasn’t alone.

That fella in orange is a pheasant hunter, his 20 gauge, or maybe a 12 gauge, at his side. He had a few dogs with him, rootin’ and hollerin’ around.

I said hello to him, asked him if it was OK if I walked through. He said yes but…”To bad you don’t have any orange  on.

Just in case.”

Point well taken. I took a wide route around this gent and his dogs. And on the way home, stopped at my local outdoor store to get an orange cap and vest.

Went back again this morning, all decked out, to do MY shooting.

Spoke with a couple of hunters. They said it’s really  late in the pheasant season and I probably won’t have much to worry about anymore.

But, on National Bird Day, at least I got out to see some of our fine feathered friends!

© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2021

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4 thoughts on “For The Birds

  1. The first few days of any hunting season, be very careful. At the start of the various hunting seasons too many people are so excited about hunting they are not as careful as they need to be.

    If a reader does not have hunter’s orange gear, wear the high visibility vest or shirt that you wear when out photographing near traffic and construction,

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