Today is Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Great To Be Back

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Rufous Sided Towhee

I am so sorry that I was not able to write my normal weekly article for the last several weeks. Some of you have heard, some of you have not. The day after Christmas, I was put into ICU at Tennova Healthcare. My primary Doctor, Dr. Gary Gallant's nurse, detected an irregular heart beat while checking my vitals. Doctor Gallant sent me over to the emergency room where they ran a few test and xrays. The conclusion to my ailments was that I have " Atrial Fibrillation" and the xray and Ct scan showed that I also had Pneumonia. One of those things by themselves was plenty to go through, but it was a double whammy.

I was to thank everyone for the nice get well cards and the visits. Sometimes we don't know how many friends we have until we are flat on our backs. My girlfriend, Diana Bright stayed with me except when she had to work. It is hard to be there by ones self. Thanks for all the Prayers and also thanks to my Editor, Zack Owensby, at The Wilson Post for using some of my older articles in my absence.

This past Saturday, Anthony Gray picked me up at our usual time and we headed south down the Old Murfreesboro Road. We turned into Hobbs Lane where we found a plethora of Field Sparrows feeding on the road side. This area is now grown up with weeds, which provides food for our feathered friends. Birds this time of the year are unusually quiet except for Bluejays and American Crows.

We cross over Highway 231 and head down Rocky Valley Road. Off to the left of the road, we find a road killed Fox Squirrel just tempting the Vultures for a morning snack. On this day, we found more things that had been hit by cars laying on the roadside. We found several Bluejays and Crows here at this location. We drove on around to where the large pond is and there was nothing stirring.

We stopped at the Cedars Of Lebanon State Park and was greeted by Glenda Oakley, who seemed tickled to see me out and about. Diane Oliver came out from the rear of the office to say howdy. They informed me that "Tut", the white Tufted Titmouse had not been around for a week or two. I certainly hope nothing has happened to it.

Driving on out Cedar Forest Road, we make a stop across from the terminus of Sue Warren Trail. We do hear Bluejays and Crows off in the distance fussing about something or another. Down in the underbrush we hear the call note of a Rufous Sided Towhee, "Cherwink." I just love to hear them. I do a little "sushing" and a Carolina Wren answers me back.

We take a right onto Blue Well Road and find several Vultures enjoying a meal of Possum Fricassee, or what ever you might call it. Anyway, it was very gross looking. Rounding the corner next to the Hog Barns a pair of Northern Flickers cross the road in front of us. At the end of Blue Well Road, we spot a Red-tailed Hawk waiting for the fog to burn off. Also down the road we find more Bluejays and Crows. Kind of getting to be a habit.

Coming out on Cainsville Road, we take a right turn onto Sherrilltown Road that winds through some of the hills and hollows between Norene and Watertown. Here we find American Kestrals watching the many hay fields for their favorite meals, small rodents of some types. Several Eastern Bluebird families are found here. More Bluejays and Crows call this area home.

Coming out on North Commerce Road we find a flock of 25 young tom Turkeys eating in a hay fiels. Anthony pulls out his cedar Turkey call and procedes to scare each and everyone of them away. He even managed to scare off a Red-tailed Hawk that was perched in a tall oak tree waiting for his breakfast. Next time, I will hide the call underneath the seat where he can't find it.

Headed back to Lebanon and a medium bowl of Hot and Sour Soup at Peking Chinese Restaurant, we make plans to stop at The Mill to film our weekly video for Facebook.

I would love to hear from you as to what's lurking about in your neighborhood and at your feeders. You can write me at, 606 Fairview Ave., Lebanon, TN, 37087, or e-mail me at, rpope15@bellsouth.net

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Our Feathered Friends
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Anthony Gray, Diana Bright, Diane Oliver, Glenda Oakley, Ray Pope
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