Thursday, November 6, 2008

FISHING FOR FISH IS FINE, but...

Global BC's meteorologist, Mark Madryga warns it's going to snow this afternoon. That's a perfect time to sit back and watch the bald eagles fish -- Oops, I mean a perfect time to edit, write, or revise. An eagle just flew by my window and interrupted my thoughts. Which illustrates just how easy it is to distract me.

Cluculz Lake is approximately fourteen kilometers long and a kilometer wide. Our home is situated roughly in the middle on the north side of the lake and about fifty feet above water level. We can see approximately four to five km to the west and two to three to the east, before the lake disappears around the bend. At this time of year, there's a lot of activity with large flocks of birds preparing to migrate. The robins have long gone. Occasionally a lone swan flies past. (Did you know although they mate for life, they will "divorce" if there's a mishap building the nest?) I haven't seen a loon in weeks. There are still plenty of ducks.

Yesterday morning, I spotted two eagles fishing out front. I called to my husband so he could also appreciate them. Eagles are such majestic creatures. It wasn't until I looked closely that I realized they weren't fishing for fish. Fifteen to twenty ducks were swimming past, fighting the waves. The eagles took turns dive-bombing the ducks, then flipping over with talons extended. The ducks turned fast and swam toward the eagles, and literally "ducked" underneath those talons. They don't turn away from eagles, ever. It as if they're saying, "We're scared to death, but bring it on, buddy."

I live in the wilderness and yet it never fails to make my stomach lurch when I see nature at its most ... I want to say savage, but it's really MotherNature's way of balancing nature. I had to turn away from the window. My husband stood guard and reported that the eagles were unsuccessful and now sitting in my neighbour's trees. The fifteen or so ducks were hiding under the wharf.

I let out a deep sigh and went back to my desk overlooking the lake. Forty minutes passed before the eagles took off to the east. Seconds later, the ducks popped up from under the wharf and headed in the opposite direction.

Nature has its moments. And this article definitely encapsulates my favouritism. Fishing for fish is fine, but not for ducks.

Back to editing....

9 comments :

  1. Interesting that their instincts tell them to swim at the eagles. They can duck, to borrow your pun, as long as they see talons coming. Swimming away, they'd never make it.

    You should write a story titled "The Courage of a Duck."

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  2. "The Courage of a Duck"... I like it!

    Did you see the email making the rounds on the internet where an eagle tries to take a swan down? He failed.

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  3. That's a neat account, Joylene. Do the eagles stay on the lake for the winter? We usually have a bald eagle or two resident on the Crowsnest River most winters recently. We have large flocks of geese living here all winter, scrounging for grain in the fields, as well as a few mergansers on the rivers.

    Chris.

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  4. Yes, Chris, they're with us all year round. Some of us believe we can identify them. But I've never been able to do that. I can usually differentiate a female from a male.

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  5. Thanks for stopping by my blog and for the congrats! I hope you do visit again and I'll certainly be back here.

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  6. Isn't the survival instinct in nature intriguing? We have a beaver pond on our property and every year a Canada goose nests on top of the beaver lodge. She's safely surrounded by an extensive moat.

    By the way, I don't know how you found it, but thanks for visiting my blog as it gave me the opportunity to find yours. I was surprised to discover a few commonalities in that I've lived in Maple Ridge, have a cabin on a lake in the Cariboo, and my second novel is set rurally near Vanderhoof. Interesting coincidences. I'll look forward to reading your "Dead Witness".

    Careann
    http://careann.wordpress.com

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  7. Thanks for dropping by, Christine. Isn't the internet a wonderful place. It's allowed me to discovered talented writers in Canada that I might never have found.

    I look forward to reading more of your blogs.

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  8. Hi Careann,

    Thanks for stopping by. I've bookmarked your blog & I'll definitely be back.

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