Friday, February 26, 2010

Snow, Red-Tailed Hawk Sex, Wildlife EXPO!

So, I will finally give a brief report on the Wildlife Expo. I can blame the delay in posting this report on lots of things, but I won't.  Just be happy it happened before the original predicted date of 2016!

We had a great year this year as usual.  It was stressful as could be throughout, but despite rain, snow, and several local birds, all went off without much of a hitch.In our first rehearsal, a wild coop gave our lanner falcon (Falco biarmicus) a flyby on the ground and then landed on the A-frame perch just a few feet away and looked at us for a minute or two.  Audrey debated trying to catch another one bare handed, but decided to let this guy go.  We saw him periodically throughout the weekend, but fortunately, no more close calls.

As if on cue, the aforementioned lanner took a 30 minute leisurely stroll around the city on Thursday in his second rehearsal.  While he was never out of radio range, he was out of visual contact for longer than I would have liked especially considering the recent appearance of the coop and the onlooker on the church steeple.  I tell you, my life gets shorter by years with each passing EXPO.
The same onlooker and her mate gave the audience a show again this year on Sunday afternoon.  They sure do like to be watched.  On a church steeple?  And on the sabbath no less.  The nerve.  Another example of the really important fact that birds don't observe the same set of "rules" that humans do!

We also had snow this year for EXPO.  Friday night was a virtual whiteout for Charleston with 4+ inches of the fluffy stuff.  It made for a beautiful drive into the Center to load birds and added a nice touch to the events at Marion Square.

As with all EXPO's past, the best thing about this one is that it is over.

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