Monday, July 13, 2009

saturday's shift

Coffee of the Day: French Roast Sumatra. Earthy and full-bodied. Very tasty.
Bird of the Day: eastern kingbird.
Invisi-bird status: No update in the lockbox since 6/18. Number actually seen by me: zero. I neither saw nor heard nor even heard tell of the northernmost pair, who I thought based on behavior had re-nested. Oh well.

Saturday turned out to be a beautiful summer day, something in short supply 'round these parts nowadays. I met Unit 61 in Lot 1 as he was coming off the beach and I was heading onto the beach. He was amazed there were only three people there. I told him it would be jam-packed by 11:00 AM. I was about an hour off. The beach was jammed and the parking lots all full by 10:00.

Few people were fishing, none of them catching anything. Some folks were having a kid's birthday party with lots of families. They gave me a bagel and a birthday cupcake. That went well with my French Roast Sumatra and my lemon ginger scone.

I wore a path to the water line chasing kids and adults out of the closed area. Amazing numbers of people did not know about the beach closure. I contacted at least 25 people of all ages and attitudes. The piece de resistence was a jogger who boldly jogged into the closed area even after he saw me coming toward him. When I told him the beach is closed, he said "I'm not swimming, I'm running." He repeated the "I'm not swimming" response when I tried again. I finally said "The sand is closed too." He wasn't interested in anything I had to say but he did turn back once he realized I was going to get backup if he didn't leave. After he was gone I muttered to myself, within earshot of a couple of other beach goers "I hope the red tide eats him." Realizing I said it out loud and it was stupid, I laughed and added "Well, technically he'd have to eat the red tide for it to affect him I guess."

Bird activity was very very slow. The wind was keeping everybody down except a few least and common terns and some very low flying tree swallows. The wind picked up a little as the morning went on and lots of leaves, pieces of straw, and trash was blowing around. A white gull feather blew past me and two eastern kingbirds swooped on it from different directions apparently both under the misapprehension that it was a flying insect of some kind. One of them caught but dropped it. They started skirmishing with each other and forgot all about the feather, which probably wasn't edible anyway.

The parking lots were all full and there was a line of cars waiting to enter the refuge by the time I left. On the way out I suggested to 61 that they start a lemonade stand.

1 comment:

Kim said...

So glad I found your blog! The Piping Plovers are such special birds and all that you and other countless volunteers do to ensure continued success in their breeding is wonderful! I would have yelled at him too!! ;o)