I hear and see so much when I walk in woods and fields and along wetland edges. This week I spent two days wandering about two different ownerships, lands for which I've written or am writing a wildlife habitat management plan. In a way I get to work and meditate at the same time, at least when I am in "the field" by myself. These particular lands are on the edge of the White Mountains along or near the Maine-New Hampshire border. Territory that is both wild and tamed, with stone walls and lost foundations, old gardens and old trees.
On Monday as I bushwhacked through one property, I flushed a bird from a thicket of young hemlock. The hemlock seedlings were no more than a foot tall growing in a small clearing, not far I might add from a huge pile of bear scat. As I parted the lush boughs, there on the ground was a hermit thrush nest with five blue eggs. Earlier in the day I saw another hermit thrush nest with four newly hatched young beneath a lowbush blueberry shrub. While many birds are already starting their migration southward, the thrushes are still nesting (The robin--also a thrush--is raising her third brood beneath our deck). Here is the hemlock thicket and the thrush nest.
The barn with a view