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Ouzels, Owls, Eagles, Kestrels and Kingfishers

Show Summary - January 12, 2009

Monologue.

Sharon welcomed everybody and talked about the importance of water for life and how this realization can create a more positive and proactive an outlook. She reminded listeners that they are the ecosystem, that their footprint is their legacy and that they can improve their legacy by living in a way that is health producing, self-sufficient and in harmony with the environment. Without water, she concluded, there is no life. But with water, we can save lives.

Guest: Art Bernstein, MS

Art Bernstein, MS (Gold Hill, OR), writer and naturalist. "Eagles, Ouzels, Owls, Kingfishers and Kestrels"

Naturalist and author Art Bernstein came by to tell Sharon about some of his favorite birds. He started with a story about bald eagles at Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge, along the California - Oregon state line, the largest bald eagle gathering place on the Pacific Flyway outside Alaska. He said that he saw four eagles sitting in a tree while he and his wife were parked about 50 feet away. A fifth eagle came by and they all started talking to each other in a high pitched, almost songbird voice. For more about bald eagles, go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bald_eagle.

Art also talked about the water ouzel (or American dipper), a small, solitary, gray bird that lives near waterfalls and loves to dive into the crashing water. He read a passage from John Muir’s famous 1894 book, The Mountains of California, in which Muir describes them as "joyous." For more about ouzels, go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Dipper. To read the John Muir chapter on water ouzels, go to http://www.sierraclub.org/john_muir_exhibit/frameindex.html?http://www.sierraclub.org/john_muir_exhibit/writings/the_mountains_of_california/.

Also discussed were the amazing owl eyeball, which rather than being round is shaped like a space capsule or an old TV tube. It therefore cannot rotate in the eye socket but it can spot an ant on a blade of grass from high in the air. And the kingfisher, a beautiful bird related to the Australian kookaburra and the woodpecker, that flies up and down rivers looking for fish. And finally, the kestrel or sparrow hawk, the smallest of the hawks, one of which used to reside near Sharon Kleyne’s driveway.

Categories: Outdoor Recreation