Sometimes a lot of effort goes into one bird......
The hours. The miles. And the hikes. But it's more than that......
It's having the experience. Knowing the terrain. And playing detective. All for one bird.
|Gray Jay collecting nesting material|
|the town of Joseph, OR-named after Chief Joseph|
The snow got deeper. A dark shadow, brief as it was, caught my attention in the dark woods. Then I heard the faint calling of a female bird nearby.
Khanh spotted the fresh tracks of the Spruce Grouse in the snow. He looked up. And I looked down. A black object blended into the dark shadows of the Spruce tree. Could it be? Would this moment happen? Just breathe Chris, it's the bird!!! I pulled Khanh back and silently pointed to the dark object near the base of the tree.
Magic. Pure joy. The male watched us as we watched him.
The Franklin's subspecies may possibly be split down the road into full species status. This grouse was named after the arctic explorer John Franklin, who led expeditions in the Northwest Territories in the 1820's.
|Khanh! He's right there!|