“People often ask me how it is that I seem to be so much at peace. There is a primary reason — and it is available to all who wish to have it. Here’s a simple prerequisite to attaining peace at that level. I invite you to observe the beasts, birds and fish and let them teach you. Let this be a daily routine and life, as you know it, will never be the same.”
– Eddie Bo

Monday, April 6, 2015

Day 97 - Road Runner - Beep Beep!

This morning I set off for the Carpinteria Bluffs in order to find a Greater Roadrunner.  These birds can be frustratingly difficult to find in our area.  There had been at least a couple of recent reports from this spot, so I thought this would be an excellent chance to try and find this elusive bird.  Plus they are quite odd-looking and fun to watch!  I was ready to spend several hours here if that it what it took to see my Roadrunner.

I arrived at the park and searched for about half an hour, positioning myself where I had long views along the pathways hoping to catch the Roadrunner crossing these open areas - they do really run and rarely fly.  I eventually made my way down to the edge of the bluff near the Harbor Seal Rookery overlook.  I watched the seals for a couple of minutes, then prepared to walk around to a better vantage point.

When I looked up at the path, much to my astonishment, there was a Roadrunner about 10 feet away and walking right towards me!  It did not seem too troubled by my presence.  I followed it down the path taking a few photos, it passed quite close to me in a rather calm fashion about three times.

At one point as I watched it started calling, a descending and slowing series of "coo coo coo"  I had never seen this before so that was quite a treat!

One interesting factoid about the Greater Roadrunner, aside form the fact they are the largest member of the Cuckoo family, is that they have zygodactyl feet, two toes in the front and two in the back which form an X pattern.  This is shown well in one of the photos below.

Another interesting find was a couple of Common Ravens.  These are not usually seen down in the coastal plains around here.  One of the Ravens had quite a bit of white in many of its feathers which gave it an odd spotted look.

Some photos from today:

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner (Note zygodactyl foot)

Roadrunner Footprint

Common Raven

After the addition of today's 1 species, the year's total stands at 202

Today I rode a total of 38.3 miles

More later,

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