11 May 2018

One viewpoint, four nests, three species!

I went for a hike with a friend at Mass Audubon's Rocky Hill sanctuary in Groton, MA, where I hadn't been for a while. Probably its major draw is the Heronry trail, which loops past an overlook on a pond with tree trunks that have established popularity for, as one might expect, their Great Blue Heron nests. When we looked out, we saw four nests. And, indeed, two proved to be occupied by GBHs, like so:

The residents of the third nest were, er, rather different...

Young Great Horned Owl with parent, looking rather sleepy in the late afternoon. That was an unexpected treat, but they are noted for their practice of "adopting" existing nests. Time to check out the fourth nest, somewhat further away:

And, it's an Osprey, perfectly situated to survey fish-hunting habitat. Four similar-looking nests, three species, viewed from the same spot at the same time! That's convenient birding! It may be time to rename the trail, though...

13 March 2018

Time change - didn't miss it!

I woke from a dream at 1:58 AM (EST) early on Sunday morning and looked at my clock to check the time. Naturally, I kept watching for a couple of minutes more, to see the switchover from 1:58 to 1:59 to 3:00 (EDT). The clock worked, as expected. More to the point, it was fascinating to note the fact that I woke up spontaneously at 1:58 to enable me to watch it. I'll generally wake up before an alarm when I've set one in order to meet some commitment, but I hadn't done so in this case and hadn't (at least consciously) declared myself as committed to supervise the clock's progress in, er, real time. Why and how did I wake so precisely? I accept that I must have a relatively fine-resolution body clock, but what tripped its alarm setting?