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Ramble with Storm: Goldfinch, hummers, doves & fall colors

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

Goldfinches and ruby-throated hummingbirds have put on a photogenic show for the past week. Unfortunately, I have not been able to get any stellar shots of them.

The other day two goldfinch fed around one of my wife’s sunflowers as I parked the car, but by the time I pulled my camera out, they were gone.

Same goes for trying to catch the hummers feeding on my wife’s scarlet runner beans. Missing that one really pissed me because it would have been a colorful shot.

To top things off, Jim McGowan of Alsip sent a Wild of the Week photo of two hummingbirds at a feeder, which is rare enough to capture two of those feisty little birds.

You will have to wait until Sunday to see that.

I have managed to get some fair shots of goldfinch at my thistle feeder.

All in all, goldfinch and hummers have been the saving grace for early fall.

In general, I find fall incredibly depressing, a bland time of coming death. To overstate the case slightly.

This morning went perfectly with that depressing bent. A light mist fell from a light fog and gray overcast.

That’s fall in my head.

The Canada geese have simply disappeared. Not a single one for yet another morning. No rabbits either, not even on the extended ramble. The brush and wild vegetation is in fall-dying-back mode enough that Storm found the foxhole again on the west of the north old clay pit and sniffed it down.

Wonder what he learns with his nose? Who goes? To put a little rhyme in the morning.

Tom the fisherman was working the south pit. He had caught and released one small largemouth already He said a bigger one was coming up and selectively feeding.

It was a morning for mourning doves and gray squirrels, starting with when we started out. The doves were not cooing much, but they were all over the wires and on the ground picking grit, dozens of them, in town and out.

Back in town, at the bur oaks a street over, a gray squirrel made an ill-timed jump off a wooden fence, but managed to hang on a low branch and climb away. Two houses on, the meathead chased another up a small decorative fruit tree. For good measure, he lunged around the back side of our neighbor’s gnarled old elm.

That kind of morning, the bland shades of squirrels and doves blending into the gray overcast.