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Thursday April 21, 2022
My alarm went off at 5:30 Easter morning. Through my window, on the far side of the lake, a full moon was slipping behind the mountains.
I heard a thump. A bird had flown into my window. Quail aren’t noted for intelligence – but even they know it’s easier to find sunflower seeds at my feeder than to scrabble around in the undergrowth looking for leftovers from last fall.
A quail, a nerf-ball of feathers, lay motionless on my deck. Broken its neck when it hit the glass, I assumed.
But I had an Easter sunrise service to attend. So I left it for later.
Categories: Soft Edges
Tags: Easter, Quail, sunrise, service, lake
I have no sentimental feelings about California quail. But in my experience, they make chickens look like candidates for Mensa.
We joke about chickens crossing the road. Around here, quail move in flocks. Sometimes so many they give an impression of the earth itself rippling in waves.
There is no such thing as a single quail. So if I see a solitary quail at the side of the road when I’m driving, I slow down. That quail will certainly try to cross the road in front of me. At the last possible second. And it will equally certainly be followed by the rest of the flock. They could fly, but they won’t. They’ll erupt from the grass and underbrush like nerf balls, and scuttle on Roadrunner legs across the blacktop.
Except that when they’re almost across, they will decide they didn’t want to go there after all; they will turn, en masse, and head back — sometimes actually underneath my car.
No, I do not have a high opinion of quail intelligence.
Tags: Quail, Mensa, intelligence