A little about Carol, who shares with us from Scotland Neck, NC:
Carol J. Shields, MA, RHEd
I am a self-described outdoor enthusiast, world traveler (who is always glad to return home), people person and now novice BLOGGER! My husband and I live among a diverse array of wildlife on a family farm just off the Roanoke River. My husband’s family has lived on this North Carolina farm for five generations and we are happy to carry on the tradition of living and eating … close to the land ~
I invite you to take a few minutes to “get back to nature” by visiting my blog. Hope to see you there real soon! Carolina Carol
For me, breakfast is usually some combination of oatmeal with walnuts, some kind of fruit and skim milk with a splash of coffee. For my morning guests at the farm … our menu offers much more exotic options … new spring sprouts, pond soaked corn, crunchy sunflower seeds, silver minnows, newly emerged swamp frogs and sometimes … even some unfortunate night creeper that has befallen a fatal encounter.
Now that spring is approaching, I can hardly wait to get up and discover who will join me for breakfast each day. 1-Coyote checking out our decoy 2-27-13Over the past couple of weeks I have had deer grazing across the yard, a fox squirrel foraging around the edge of the yard, a curious coyote, a possum, a wild turkey, a family of nutria, buzzards, dozens of robins, pairs of wood ducks, 3 Great blue herons, 2 bald eagles, a couple of redtail hawks and a constant stream of cardinals accompanied by a variety of other small birds coming and going from our bird feeder. It is a constantly changing display produced from above and directed by Mother Nature … a dazzling production each day. I can hardly lay my camera down, leave the binoculars alone or stay away from my computer (where I enjoy reporting my daily finds) in order to eat my own breakfast ~
I left that end of the house to walk to the kitchen and I looked out to discover a bald eagle (back from the day before) finishing off a carcass in the edge of the field behind the house. I picked my camera back up and snapped 7 or 8 pictures of him. He stayed on task until I had to leave the house around 3:00 pm and at some point, a younger eagle joined him. The mature eagle retreated and allowed the younger one to have a go at the lifeless spoils they had taken possession of. Above a tree full of hopeful buzzards hovered, waiting for any leftovers that might be abandoned by the eagles.Eagle perched behind house 3-13
This morning as I came through the house and got a view of the backyard, I had a growing group of optimistic buzzards gathered in the same tall tree above the spot where the eagles staked their claim yesterday. Sure enough, the eagle was back to finish off the remains of yesterday’s featured entrée. At the same time, three Great blue herons landed in the pond (actually more of a watering hole at this point) behind the house. Heron checking out the local menu 3-13Illuminated by the morning light, the herons skillfully moved through the water fishing for their morning fare of small fish or perhaps a frog or two. Several pairs of ducks came and went over the course of the time that it took me to cook my oatmeal and eat my own breakfast. As I ate, the ducks circled around the area where my husband had thrown out a little surplus corn. They reminded me of a group of kids splashing and playing in a pool … randomly tipping up to dive down for the corn that had been donated for their dining pleasure.
I really have lots to do today and shouldn’t have taken the time to blog about something as ordinary as breakfast but I just couldn’t resist. I love sharing my morning encounters with nature as much as I enjoy experiencing them. Just one of the sweet rewards of … “living and eating (breakfast) … close to the land” ~
Do you ever have ”unexpected guests” drop in for breakfast? I would love to hear about your visitors ~
Til next time … here’s to the wonders of living close to the land!
From Carolina Carol
P.S. I apologize for the quality of the pictures as they were all taken through glass so as not to spook my hungry guests ~