Behold The Common Duck!

Duck, Duck… Quack!
Cute little quackers aren’t they?
The Moms apparently decided to “pool” their resources and go for the group day-care option.
Clever moms!
But one little duckling swam to a different drummer, out on the pond all by his lonesome! He refused to bow to peer pressure, or his mama’s stern quacking. I have a child just like this. I suspect most of the WP bloggers I follow are like him as well. Kudos to all who dare to be different!
The mama’s had their bills full of little quackers.
Seems much like herding cats!
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Cheers to you from The Holler!

Say Hi to the World’s Heaviest Eagle!

Okay class. This is the last of your unsolicited tutorials on raptors of the world.
Meet the Stellar Sea Eagle.
Thought to be rarest raptor in the world.
It is considered by many to be the world’s most magnificent raptor, and is the heaviest eagle in the world, even larger than the Harpy. It wingspan can be over 8 feet. That’s three world records for only one birdie!
That’s kinda like being Lance Armstrong before we found out he was cheating.
Anyhoo, little is known about the Stellar Sea Eagle due to their remote habitat. They live exclusively on the North East Coast of Russia, North Korea and select coastal areas of Japan. They catch fish, mainly salmon, while flying along the surface of the water. Check out the side view of this eagle’s eye in the photo below. You can see the retina and how it swivels, giving the Stellar his incredible prey spotting capabilities, and you can see through the transparent aqueous body of the eye.
Here is an interesting factoid. The Stellar engages in a practice called “Kleptoparasitism.”
I’ve known a person or two in my life who seemed to engage in this practice as well. But I digress……
Anyhoo, the Stellar rips off other bird’s kills. I guess the other birds know enough not to object.
I don’t know about you, but I certainly wouldn’t!
“Want my salmon? Sure! Take it all….No problem. I wasn’t hungry anyway…..”
Afterall, this is one big birdie, with one very big beak!
If this eagle escaped from the zoo and flew to The Holler, I would catch a wind-draft to Arizona, along with the red-tails and every other raptor at The Holler!
Cheers to you from The Holler!

Crowned Eagle!

The Crowned Eagle is the most powerful eagle in Africa. It can fly at up to 100 mph silently and kill prey that weigh up to 44 pounds. We saw these eagles hunting in Africa and it was an unbelieveably impressive sight. Mated eagle pairs often hunt together which is what we observed. They are monogamous unless their mate dies, and they return to the same nest for many years.
Crowned Eagles are the only surviving members of their genus, the Madagascar Crowned Hawk Eagle which became extinct about a thousand years ago.
The San Diego Zoo had the first Crowned Eagle hatched in captivity in 1996.
I imagine this is how the eagle might look to it’s prey as it closed in. Rather intimidating no?
If one of these eagles escaped from the zoo and flew over to The Holler, the red-tailed hawks would catch the next air draft to Arizona!

Eagle Owl!

The San Diego Zoo has a remarkable number of raptor species from all over the world. The Eurasian eagle owl is the world’s second largest owl with wingspans of almost 6 feet.
The eagle owl is an old-world owl found in parts of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Gorgeous aren’t they?
They are an adaptive species and nest in The Sahara Desert, the equatorial jungles of Africa and the northern reaches of Siberia.
The owl preys on rodents, rabbits, foxes and even young deer. It also preys on other birds.
Populations are increasing due to increases in the feral rabbit populations in Eurasia.
I think The Holler red-tailed hawks would be most pertubated if one of these guys escaped from the zoo and mosied over to The Holler!
Imagine the photos though!
Cheers from The Holler!

Santons D’Art Avignon France!

While visiting Provence this spring, I was fascinated by the Santons D’Arts. These are handmade and hand painted terra-cotta figurines made throughout Provence depicting everyday village life. They were first made in Provence in the mid 1700’s and the art form continues to this day. Check them out:
What struck me about the Santons was how similar they are to the folk art Retablos I posted about earlier this year from Argentina. Check out the link and note the similarities:
Both the Retablos and the Santons D’Arts are folk art that originally depicted religious scenes, but both also evolved to depict scenes from everyday life. Check out one more example of each, one after the other.
Santons D’Art
Folk Art Retablos Argentina
Remarkable aren’t they? And Remarkably similar, although quite distant from each other geographically.
It is a small world. Our similarities greater than our differences,