Raptors Rapture Day


Photo by Ray Henness on unsplash site

With a storm front moving in the wind has begun to whip the trees and move the clouds along at a clipper ship clip.  Cumulous clouds are billowing full sail in the blustery sky.

As I watch the display of clouds colliding, raptors appear and begin to play.  



Photo by Paul Greene on unsplash site

It is as if the wind has come with an open invitation for fun.  For these majestic birds, I can see it is an absolute gas.  It is flying without having to flap their wings, it is pure soaring with speed and grace even into the face of a forty mile per hour wind.  They are like actors performing ingenious maneuvers to build up tremendous momentum for reversing direction, swiveling  and diving and rising again. It is raptor rapture day.


Photo by Steve Harvey on unsplash site

Michigan has many eagles and hawks, including the bald eagle that has made a major comeback since the banning of the pesticide DDT.  Now there seems to be more eagles than even before DDT had nearly destroyed them back in the seventies.


Photo by Paul Codling on unsplash site

I am seeing the eagles and other raptors regularly, often feeding on road kill along our highways.  Along with the eagles, road kill is also a favorite meal of the crows that have turned carnivorous.  A skunk recently was killed just down the road and the crows ate everything but the skunk’s teeth.  Apparently crows have no nose.  These birds also love the wind, though much less graceful in their attempt to have fun.  They are looking inept and clumsy in relation to the streamlined red hawk that just cruised our neighborhood.


Photo by Ray Henness on unsplash site

With the sky black and menacing, I head for home.  The raptors seem to be riding the storm front like surfers on a perfect wave.  I wonder where the storm will lead and leave them.  Will they have to come down to earth or flap their wings to get back home?  

Richard Rensberry, Author at QuickTurtle Books®

Afterward:   Protecting chickens from raptors is an ongoing game between farmer and hawk.  Free range chickens are especially susceptible to being lunch.  We keep a close eye on them when they are outside of their pen’s safety.  The chickens themselves can often sense when a raptor is around and head for cover.  It is all part of the natural scheme of things.

Abigail’s chickens is a kids book about some of our chickens.  It has nothing to do with raptors.  Abigail’s Chickens is a rhyme for young readers about the busy life of Sally, Queenie and Gertrude.  They have eggs to lay, bugs to catch and things to say.  This delightful poem for kids is for ages three to eight.  This is book 8 in the Rhyme for Young Readers Series by QuickTurtle Books®.

  cover 2 for Chickens

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