Majesty above...beauty below
The cool balmy days of spring are waning fast. Wouldn’t you know I picked this weekend to start a dock project of my own. By 11 am Saturday the temperature was in the 90s. I am not complaining...that is just how it is in Florida. Thursday is trash pickup day so on Wednesday I roll my trash bin to the curve. I notice tell tale pieces of bark and wood chips scattered on the ground. Sure signs of our Pileated Woodpecker excavating a new nest and scattering the chips so that we earth dwellers don’t know where the new nest is. As I retrieve my trash bin the next morning I look up and see a Bald Eagle soaring over my head heading out to hunt in the early morning light.
The words of Henry David Thoreau come to mind as I observe the silent majesty above me. “We who live this plodding life here below never know how many eagles fly over us”. I head to the dock and see the Tricolored Heron below me on the hunt for minnows. The heron is all decked out in breeding plumage. Its bright blue beak, maroon legs and white plume make this bird a striking beauty to behold. It is mating season and this fellow must have mouths to feed nearby. I get low on the floating dock to get a birds eye view of the hunt. If I stretched and coiled my neck like this heron I would have to visit a chiropractor every week. The outgoing tide provides concentrated channels of water full of hapless minnows. I have many times now noticed it looking skyward as if listening for something. I have learned to lookup when they do and sure enough I see a juvenile Eagle above us heading back to the nest. The local crows hurry it along. With the danger past and his belly full, the Tricolored Heron lets out a squawk and heads off to the nest to feed some hungry beaks.
I find myself looking skyward more often now. I don’t want to miss those soaring eagles. The birds have taught me a lesson for sure. Someday it will be me soaring home..and watching the beauty below me. Until then, we keep plodding along. Blessings..Harry