Mansfield Fox

Law student. Yankees fan. Massive fraggle. Just living the American dream.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Our Noblest Bird

As I mentioned eons ago (OK, in August), there's a flock of about a dozen wild turkeys who live (year round, it now seems) in the woods of the coastal Rhode Island town in which my grandmother makes her domicile. My last time there I failed to record any photo evidence of their existence, a failure which - purely by accident - I was able to remedy just before Christmas.

I'd been wandering with my camera in the brambly, undeveloped parts of the subdivision, hoping to get photographs of the pond, the trees, the stone walls - the whole bucolic New England thing. Then suddenly I heard from across the road the noise of a dog barking, then the sound of commotion and the strangest cry. (Turkeys don't "gobble-gobble", except by convention. It sounded to me more like "hobba-hobba". But that's neither here nor there.)

I turned and saw a large family of turkeys darting across one of the empty lots in a mad dash for the brambles, and safety. Most had made it to the wood's edge by the time they caught my eye (fast little buggers), but I managed to observe a few stragglers. Some in flight (turkeys are far more graceful in the air than you'd imagine), some on foot (the same cannot be said for the ambulatory ones).

Snapping photos the whole time, I followed them into the woods. My progress was slowed by the thorns, and by the extraordinary dryness of the leaves, which announced my movements to the turkeys and enabled them to maintain a safe distance. I present to you now the best of turkey shots, which I must confess are not very good. 1,000 apologies; I shall attempt to get better shots the next time I'm in the area.

Audubon Society material, I ain't.