Saturday, February 09, 2008

Bird brained

I needed a little adventure today, and since I've been really interested in birds lately, I took Fiona to the Portland Audubon Society. They have a really beautiful visitors' center with a wildlife health care center, and there is beautiful hiking to enjoy in the surrounding sancturary.

Today was great. There were volunteers taking the education birds around to visit with people. We got to meet Julio, a great horned owl, and Finnegan, a peregrine falcon. They are both unable to live in the wild and make the wildlife care center their full-time home. It feels really special to get up close to these really quite dangerous predators and see them moving. Hear them talking. Even just watching them blink is pretty darn cool.

Another really cool thing about the care center is that the hospital window is mostly glass on one side, so you can watch the volunteers at work. They had a number of birds resting in cages and aquariums, including a robin snuggled up in a towel and a little brown bird pecking at some seeds. These guys were so close to the viewing window that I could see the glass fogging up as the robin breathed in and out!

After we saw all the creatures, we hiked down the Macleay trail, following Balch Creek down into the city. It was a truly lovely day, warm and sunny, the perfect day to be out enjoying the forest and the water. The kind of day that makes you glad to be alive!

1 comment:

Erin said...

That sounds like a great and fun getaway :) I remember being kind of creeped out by the Great Horned Owl we saw on Kt's birthday so many years ago. I got the feeling it was looking at me and thinking "ooooh, look! A Snack!" I'd kind of like to see one again to see if the vibe is still there.