We are in that strange phase of the year where it wants to be warm in the afternoon but cool overnight.  Soon we will beyond the time of the year when snakes will be out and about but not yet.  Yesterday I went out to blow the leaves off the front step.  There on the warm sidewalk was a little grey ring necked snake.  It slid off the sidewalk and into one of the cracks.  I am comfortable that it is a harmless little guy and I never harm them.  I am sure that the leaf blower scared him a lot more than his appearance did me.  This morning I went out to get the newspaper and there was a thin black snake on the driveway.  He didn't look too perky and had a funny shape.  I took a stick to see if he had been the victim of one of the cars or the tractor.  It took him a minute to get his act together but he slithered off into the grass.  I think he was just a common black snake and those I also just leave alone.

I can't remember when I saw the last poisonous snake  here at Rabbit Run.  I am pretty sure that it was about a year ago and I was out mowing and I saw a copperhead was sunning itself on the edge of the driveway.  It took off and I chased it with the mower.  The mower is very noisy and a little snake strike didn't change the noise level much.  I saw the body minus the head a little later on the next pass over that area.  I think I saw a copperhead in a wood pile once but I don't go there too often in snake season.

With the cooler nights, the humming birds haven't all left yet.  Barb says the juveniles hang around a little longer than the adults trying to lay in enough fat to make it further south.  We have had a visitor or two at the feeder the last couple of days but not the constant battle over the territory that was evident earlier.  I am sure that soon the last of the hummers will head south and we will take down the feeders.

Speaking of feeders, I am thinking that I need to get some feed for the deer and the over wintering birds.  I saw that one of the Farm Supply stores have suet blocks on sale for 79 cents.  They are normally about a dollar each.  The woodpeckers can go through three a week when they are hitting it hard.  That will start about the time we have the first frost.  I haven't seen an apple or a pear on the ground out in the orchard so I am fairly sure the deer are making nightly forages into the orchard.  Barb and I picked up the last of the Asian pears this week.  Last year we had a couple of five gallon buckets of fruit in the garage for feeding the animals.  This year not so much.  I will also get a feed bunk to put down the hill.  Last year I had a little round rubber pan and it just wasn't big enough. 

Barb's picture of me at Lake Shawnee
 Yesterday we went for a bike ride and it was fun.  I saw an egret and Barb's picture of it was shown on the news during the weather segment.  She informed me that herons and egrets look the same but the egrets have black legs.    We seem to have a fairly diverse group of birds here at Lake Shawnee.  Very soon most of the birds will head south and leave us with the damned Canadian Geese that crap on the sidewalk. Our recumbent bikes don't have fenders and there is nothing more messy than a damp sidewalk and goose poop.  Not to mention that it can be very slippery.  If you go somewhere to feed the fowl, feed them on the grass.  Leave the roads and sidewalks for the vehicles.  If no one is feeding them, look where they are eating.  Yep, they eat grass like goats.

Better run and see what's in store, or at the store.


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