summer in california means many things to many people. in the past it has meant to me that i had one more stupid season to get through before autumn finally arrived, and i could wear sweaters and eat squash again. living in the mountains has toned down my dislike for summer, and i have come to more fully embrace the long days and barbequed foods and cold beverages that i used to really not care that much about.
summer in california also means that the local wildlife is out in full force. frogs, cicadas, owls, mockingbirds, coyotes--they're a constant nightly reminder that 27 hours of daylight is not nearly enough, and will screech in protest all night long. luckily for me, i wear earplugs to sleep.
my all-time favorite summer "visitor" is also a bit noisy, but it's an adorable noise. the california quail makes a poppy sort of whooping sound as it scratches through the brush bordering our property. they like to gather there in the mornings and late afternoons, and i like to try and get as close as possible without scaring them away. i unfortunately suck at it, so i have to make do with glimpses of blurred feet scrambling into the christmas tree farm next door and sightings down the driveway.
a baby quail is called a walnut. take a moment to fully absorb that fact, i'll wait.
ok, you good now? no? me neither. i still can't get over the fact that the offspring of one of the cutest birds ever is called a freaking walnut. a group of quail is called a covey*. so you can have a covey of walnuts. i don't even know what to do with myself in situations like this.
JUST LOOK AT THIS:
LOOK AT THAT FACE.
*thanks, covey run vineyards!