Sunday, February 5, 2017

Winter Doldrums

This week took us into the February, the killing month. For decades February has annually been the most difficult for me to endure. I feel the dwindles upon me, winter's doldrums are inevitably gripping. I reminisce about the near life-ending event of February 1995. I suppose revival and endurance are with me. Heh. Unconsciously I seem to often plan a trip to a warmer climate during February. It's like insurance to save me from the worst month of the year. Last year, I traveled to Colombia. This year will be more routine, but restorative nonetheless with another trip to the Lower Rio Grande Valley.

Snow Buntings, Dane Co, WI 1Feb2017
My birding efforts fell off this week. I suspect they will remain subdued well into March. I have little interest in chasing easy-to-get bird species for the sake of remaining atop the county Top 100 Lists. At this juncture, Short-eared Owl is likely the only species I strategically should concentrate efforts to find if I cared enough about my annual eBird lists. But I don't.

Time to diversify. Or maybe catch up on cataloguing photos. Work with my hands. Expand my mind. Yes, nature offers refuge, but currently I'm down on the cold, wind and overcast skies. As I write the sun is trying to come through clouds and hints of blue paint the sky outside my window. Is Mother Nature beckoning me? Fail. The clouds won.

Snow Buntings in a corn field, Dane county, WI 1Feb2017
I made it out birding all of one time this week for a short foray looking for field birds. Tis the season for searching the flat tundra-like ag land and manure spreads for Snow Buntings, Lapland Longspurs and Horned Larks.

Horned Larks relishing a manure spread, Dane county, WI 1Feb2017
My brief effort to find these species in eastern Dane county (WI) was successful.

More Snow Buntings, Dane co, WI 1Feb2017

Yet I managed to have a meltdown that day. The politics of late have eroded my tolerance for even the most minor of life's challenges. So home I returned and my binoculars have hung there since.


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