Before we left, Garth Spellman, our museum ornithology curator, gave us this advice: “When you see a bird, listen for a bird.” We’ve been applying that regularly. Our favorite sightings and listenings are early morning. When we wake in the morning with the warm, bright sunlight, we always open the two curtains to see the view. On one morning recently, this little guy (above) was on our truck, and a few moments later we heard his bold repeating call-out. I’ve popped a video that records his call at the very bottom of this posting.
On two other mornings, we heard before we saw – this time wild turkeys. The first morning, we used binoculars to track a Tom on the hillside; you can see and hear the gobble of this handsome guy in the video at the bottom of this posting. The second morning, there were right outside our window and we woke to their gobble-gobbling as they passed.
These wild turkey sightings were a real treat. We had stayed two nights far up the river canyon and into Manti-La Sal National Forest, near Arches National Park. On both nights we had struggled to find a campsite with availability, driving late into the night until we came across this treasure of a spot, Rock Castle Campgrounds. Seeing – and hearing – these wild turkeys (and later taking an open air shower; we were truly isolated) was consolation indeed for the long drive.
Item we never use at home, but find indespensible on the road: binoculars
Item we use daily at home, but find quite pointless on the road: teapot
Little guy who landed on the truck: listen for his call-out!
Tom Turkey stunting his stuff and gobble-gobbling on the hillside (filmed through binoculars):