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Ramble with Storm: Fall images & mysteries of a duck, geese & hedge apples

Mulling things on my morning ramble with Storm, our family’s mixed Lab.

It was a stunningly beautiful morning, one of those where even somebody who hates the season like me can appreciate it. Enough cloud cover to make the sunrise a palette of colors.

Not much in terms of wildlife, until I reached the north old clay pit.

Then I found a lone duck swimming with eight Canada geese on the south shore of the north pit. Not a pair of ducks, which is relatively common. Just a lone duck. I think a hen wood duck.

Why the lone duck? I really have no clue on that. Maybe the youth hunt yesterday took out the drake.

Then I counted four more geese swimming in the middle of the north pit, a knot of four and another of three along the north shoreline.

The sun rose in a pinpoint of red light through the trees as we crossed the bridge over the neckdown between the two old pits.

On the east side of the south pit, there was much to savor, including the dried seed pod above and 29, count’em, 29 hedge apples down, including this clot of them.

So I picked up one to take home to my wife.

Maybe after the Bears game I will take our youngest and his buds hedge-apple bowling again.

Back in town, a string of eight geese flew low, straight over downtown. Then four more scattered around and low as we neared home.

A pair of blue jays squawked back and forth along the alley running behind the bus barn.

Storm flushed one gray squirrel up the neighbor’s gnarled old elm while another sprinted to the street-side maple.