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Ramble with Storm: The idea of the town pond & sneaking around a tree

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Mulling things on my morning ramble with Storm, the family's mixed Lab.


The town pond is an idea. It's that wild place across the tracks, just outside of town.

A place where anything can happen, good and bad.

Of course, it is an actual place, too, a pair of old clay pits from the days when the town was noted for making tile.

The usual plethora of robins littered the yards in town and the cooing of mourning doves came from all sides. Beautiful spring morning, shirt weather.

Old-timers tell stories of when the ball field--on the town side of the tracks--was a big pit, where trash was dumped. Then it was filled in and the ball field put on top.

I like that kind of re-use.

The meathead and I did an extended ramble, in part so I could check for morel mushrooms. I found none, zilch, zero.

The usual racket of red-winged blackbirds trilling ringed the north pit. Four lone Canada geese waddled around the grass around the town pond.

On Sunday, our daughter begged to go fishing, so after some garden work, we got out, even as some drizzle and light rain spit. That weather change might have been the reason fishing was so good..

The town pond is part of our lives, so we have spots, including one that our daughter found. It is a pile of branches and limbs on the edge of deep water, in other words a perfect spot to hold both crappie or bluegill depending on the time of year.

Sunday, it held both. Our youngest son started us with a decent bluegill. Then our daughter caught the first real crappie of her life.

The families of goslings were all on the west side of the south pit when we came down the back side, east side, this morning. I wonder if they are learning our morning routine and have learned to move away from the east shore around dawn.

On the edge of the brush before leaving the upper edge of the old rail now a trail and reentering town, Storm chased a gray squirrel up a tree. The squirrel leaped between branches with quite a few misses.

For a change on Sunday, our youngest did not find any snakes, frogs or turtles. Usually, he finds that kind of stuff without even seeming to try. He truly understands the idea of the town pond being a natural spot, a wild space.

Back in town, I thought I heard one of the town's Eurasian collared-doves making its odd noise in a neighbor's yard. I have never confirmed the Eurasian collared-doves in town, so I saw my chance.

When he pecked his way around the back side of a big tree, I quickly ran up close to the tree. When it came around the tree, I could clearly see the defining dark ring on the back of its neck.

I took a great deal of satisfaction from that confirmation. Sometimes I am a very simple guy.


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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on May 7, 2013 8:22 AM.

Turkey of the Week: Plans for an Ogle County tom was the previous entry in this blog.

Midwest Fishing Report: Rivers around Chicago fishing is the next entry in this blog.

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