Buzzards+Fort Stockton = Swallows+Capistrano?

One of the presumed harbingers of spring in West Texas is the return of roosting buzzards. If that's true, then Fort Stockton has seen its last cold snap for the season, as evidenced by this iPhone video I shot last evening from my parents' backyard:



This is just a fraction of the flock of scavengers that would eventually come to roost in the Afghan pines and live oak trees of the neighborhood. My guess is that there were 100-200 of the big birds.

They're actually quite graceful, floating silently and effortlessly in the stiff breezes that persisted until nightfall. The only unsettling thing about them being directly overhead was...well, I'll leave it to your imagination.

The voices you hear at the end of the video recounting an encounter of a motorcycle with a buzzard are those of my brother and his wife.

3 Comments

Eric, good stuff - thanks for sharing. You're absolutely spot-on about their grace. They may not be much to look at up-close ... but they are, for me at, among the finest gliders in nature.

Eric, here we were fussing about the return of the barn swallows (mud birds, we prefer to call them)to the corner of our porches. They leave such a mess of dropped mud and after the birdies are born, well.... The hummingbirds should be here soon, too.

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This page contains a single entry by Eric published on March 28, 2010 9:44 AM.

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