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Icelandic Birds~


Icelandic waters are teeming with over 300 species of fish, and many marine mammals, but they have only a handful of terrestrial wild animals including reindeer, mink and arctic fox, and 85 species of birds.

The Northern Fulmar is a pelagic bird, meaning they spend their lives at sea, and are capable of diving several meters in pursuit of prey.

They resemble albatross, and have tubular beaks for processing sea water like other pelagic birds, including albatross and petrels.

Very handsome Tufted Ducks are common breeders all over Iceland. This is a female.

Ocean swimming Greylag Geese breed in Iceland, Finland and Scandinavia, and winter in the British Isles.

The Northern Common Sea Eider is the producer of eider-down which is harvested in Iceland by special eider farmers.

Black Headed Gulls are common in Iceland.

This one is a juvenile.

Adaptable Starlings first settled in Iceland in the 1940’s, and now can be seen nesting in Akureyri and Reykjavik.

Cheers to you from beautiful Iceland and her very hardy birds~

Why Did He Go?


I remain as amazed by this question as this little toddler.

There is this wonder of birds, and children.

You want them to stay with you, but if they did, it wouldn’t be the same.

We are home now in sunny Southern California.

I still have more of Iceland to share,

but thought you might want a break from fire and ice,

to soak up a bit of sun and surf.

We still, desperately need rain, but like the song says, ‘you can’t always get what you want.’

Cheers to you from home sweet home~

Window Shots~


Meep-Meep Jr. is much shyer than Mama-Meep.

He likes playing me like Wile E.

Whenever I venture outside,

he vanishes, in a cloud of dust.

He forces me to shoot him through the double-paned, not too clean, windows.



Cheers to you from the very fast, quite shy, and oh-so-wiley, Meep-Meep-Junior~

Froggie Went A’Courtin~


Either Mrs Toad is expecting, or she is feasting on far too many bugs! She is over 5 inches long and quite chubby.

Dragon, the fly, needs to keep his distance, because Mrs T can spring into action quite suddenly.

Mrs T is a clever critter, who waits patiently at the right time of day for the drip line to start emitting precious water, providing needed relief for an overheated toad on hot summer days.

T is a California Western Toad, a threatened species of ‘special concern,’ due to die offs caused by fertilizer contamination, disease, and habitat destruction.

Western Toads are terrestrial, and we have a thriving colony of them inside The Holler fences.

Cheers to you & happy weekend from the comfortably chubby, and quite toadish, Mrs Toad~

Winged Lightning~


Of all The Holler’s,


flying folks,


Hummer’s are the fastest of the fast.


They pause, only seconds, to sip,


and then flash by,


like winged-lightning.


Cheers to you from the The Holler’s fastest flying folks~

Baby Peter Cotton Tail~


So far, Baby Valentine the owlet, only looks at Baby Peter Cotton Tail,

and visa versa!

They don’t know what to make of each other……

yet!

Cheers to you from The Holler’s still safe baby buntings~

Baby Valentine~


Sleepy owlet Valentine wears his ❤ on his face. (Click to enlarge and see Valentine better).

Mama has left him, and it is his first day alone, out of his nesting box.

Valentine doesn’t know what to do,

so he decides to fly down near the human,

watch her out of one eye,

until he falls asleep, clinging to his cactus bed.
Cheers to you from Valentine the confused little owlet~

Note: We have a barn owl nesting box at The Holler, usually woodpeckers nest in it, but this spring a barn owl family actually moved in. Valentine is their chick. I kept an eye on him for his first 24 hours out of the box, which was easy because he seemed quite unafraid of me. I think he was a bit shocked and confused. He passed his second night last night, and I could hear him in the oak groves. Today I haven’t seen him, but have heard him in the trees, so I think he is starting to figure things out.