Saturday, January 31, 2009

Day of the Snow Bunting

I saw FIVE flocks of snow buntings today. FIVE. And I think I earned them. I spent a tremendous amount of time shuttling kids around.

Calvin had basketball at 8:30 this morning at a school I'd never even heard of. After much Googling, I found it was about 12 miles north of Cloquet, about an hour's drive from our house. We left at 7. But since I was that far north, I had to travel further...

...to Sax Zim Bog. It was only a twenty or thirty minute drive away, and basketball would last at least two hours. I had to have a sneak preview of the festival. But, despite all my driving, no owls. I did find the Admiral Road feeder, and found it amazingly similar to mine at home; redpolls and chickadees. I did see TWO northern shrikes, and my first flock of snow buntings for the day.

I got back to the school in time to catch the last quarter of the second game, then took Calvin and his friend to Subway for lunch, stopped at Wally World to pick out a birthday gift, then home.

The birthday gift was for a friend of Mr. Attitude's. He was invited to a birthday party, his first ever, so when I arrived home from basketball I had to turn around, wrap a present, and drive to Attitude's friend's house. It was not where I thought it was, and although I will not admit to being lost, we took an extra ten minutes getting there. But on the way I saw two more flocks of snow buntings. Cool.

On the way home from dropping Attitude off, I saw two more flocks of snow buntings. AWESOME! The last one was just south of the Duquette store; there had to have been about a hundred individual birds. As I followed their movement, they just melted into the sky and disappeared. Really.

My car thermometer read an incredible 46 (above!) as I drove Mr. Attitude home from his party. Whoa. This is definitely tropical for the last day of January in Minnesota. In between driving I do admit to standing out on the deck, soaking up the sunlight, sipping a beer and watching the redpolls and chickadees at my feeder.

I get to sleep in tomorrow. Life is good.

8 comments:

forest wisdom said...

Ah! I love Snow Buntings.... Life is good indeed....

Lynne said...

Good grief but it was gorgeous up there today. I never saw any Snow Buntings but had a great bird day.
Every day up at Hasty is a good bird day. :)

Floridacracker said...

46 above zero? OMG break out the sunscreen and surfboards!
LOL!
37 here right now!

Jayne said...

What a great day Deb!

barefoot gardener said...

Award for you at my place

Deb said...

Forest Wisdom- They are beautiful birds.

Lynne- Well you saw crossbills! That's a great day in itself.

FC- It only got up to 35 today. Sigh. I could get used to this...

Jayne- Despite all the running, I figured out how to have some fun. :)

Barefoot- Noted. I'll try to come up with something. Thank you!

RuthieJ said...

Sounds like you had a good day Deb. I just checked over at Mike's blog and it looks like he's getting those birdies to pose pretty good in anticipation of the Sax-Zim festival. You and Lynne will have a great time!

nina said...

Soak in that sunshine when you can!