Flamingo Chick

October 14, 2010

Flamingo and 5-day-old chick, Woodland Park Zoo

I’ll likely be posting more zoo pictures in the next three months because I have signed up for the Zoo Walkers Program at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo.  I found out about this program through Group Health.  Twice a week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, I can do my daily walking exercise on the zoo grounds.

The highlight of a recent zoo walk was a 5-day-old flamingo chick.  The zoo keeper said that it was quite late in the year for this birth.  There are also 13 unhatched eggs that she is monitoring, although it is likely that some of the eggs are infertile.  When she walked among the flock to check on the nests, I could see where the phrase “ruffled feathers” originated!

Flamingos and chick

Checking on her chick

Flamingo and chick, settling down to nest

I bet it's warm as an oven under there!

Spring in Minnesota is a few weeks behind Seattle’s, but the early harbingers of a Midwestern Spring are every bit as miraculous and entrancing.  I’d like to share three signs of Spring from my Dad’s farm.

Baby chick

Baby chick

While I was visiting, my brother received his delivery of 50 baby chicks. They stay under a heat lamp for the first few days until they gain strength.  The chicks are not farm pets.  They are destined for the roasting pan, feeding the family for a full year.

Trio of eggs in a robin's nest

Trio of eggs in a robin's nest

My brother showed my sister and me this hidden robin’s nest with its trio of eggs.  I was stunned by their rich blue color.  Until now, I had thought robin’s egg blue was a pale, pastel color, based on a few broken egg shells I had found. Perhaps the shell fragments had faded because these living eggs were a deep blue-green. 

Hanging the laundry outside

Hanging the laundry outside

My 90-year-old Dad does his weekly laundry every Monday.  All winter he hangs his clothes to dry on clotheslines strung across the dark basement, and they slowly drip dry over several days.  The Monday of my visit was the first time all year he hung the laundry outside.  The spring wind was steady but mild, and the clothes dried in no time.  I love the smell of sun-dried laundry!