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Sharp-tailed Grouse | by annkelliott
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Sharp-tailed Grouse

The small group of four of us, who drove around all day in the south west quadrant of Nanton and the surrounding areas for the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count, were very lucky to see a total of 70 of these fascinating Sharp-tailed Grouse (split up in several different locations). Their numbers seem to vary greatly from year to year. We pulled over to take a good look at this one high up in a tree, and my friends were very patient, giving me the chance to photograph it. This angle is a little "different", but at least there are no small twigs across its face and body, LOL, unlike the other shots I got : ) Aren't they just beautiful birds? Love those gorgeous feather patterns. And yes, you do have to smile at those wonderful, feathery legs. A very heavily cropped photo, by the way, but even so, this was the closest and best view I'd ever had of one before.

 

The helpful lady from the Coroner's Office in England called a short while ago and left a message with the results of my brother's autopsy - natural causes, Ischaemic Heart Disease. I was up to about 5:00 a.m. this morning, I think, trying to find a few songs/music that felt right for John's funeral. I went to YouTube to listen to various ideas, but I'm still not sure how I can get some of these choices from "here" to "there" (Birmingham) : ) I wasn't thinking very clearly and just saved the songs from YouTube - which I read later doesn't work (for obvious copyright reasons, I guess). I think my friend in England said that the funeral place has a list of music to choose from, but of course there are so many versions of, say, Amazing Grace, that I'm not sure how I know what version would be played. Any help/suggestions from anyone who has had to do this, would be much appreciated. Now that the autopsy results are known, I know that time for getting things done is running out rapidly.

 

And HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my good friend, George (George Dixon) today!

  

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Taken on January 2, 2011