Sunday, November 15, 2015

11-15 Lake Brantley & Some Cute Quail

I try really hard not to drive more than one or two days in a row, so today was my rest day.  I'll be here another day and night, but tomorrow am probably going to be going out to explore some falls and a botanic garden. 

This campground, as is true for most in off-season areas, is pretty much empty and VERY quiet.  Anyway, since I am backed in, sitting in my recliner while I work and watch TV gives me a great view of the campground.  I saw a desert bunny hopping around this morning, but most common were the little quail. 

I love quail because they run around seemingly in circles in little bunches on amazingly fast legs.  They run around in little "herds" of about 10-12.  I'd call them "flocks" except that they almost never fly, preferring instead to run away when they are spotted. The other funny thing about them is that they are constantly chirping or calling to one another as they run around pecking at the ground! 
I have also learned that it is sometimes better to take photos from inside my motorhome because most animals run away faster if they can see you.  These first few photos were taken through my window as I stood very still.  Note how good their camouflage is.  The one on the lower right is easy to see but the one on the upper left disappears into the gravel.

And here is a cute little bunch of three. I assume they are pecking at seeds of some sort.

Here are a couple of close-ups.  I had never seen this variety with the little white feather tufts on their heads.  My Shelby Birds book says they are called "Sealed Quail," and are not as common as the Gambel's and the California quail, which have topknot feathers on their heads.  Males and females look almost identical.

Rain was expected later today, so I took a break and went out for a walk and to take out two bags of trash.  Here is a view from my campsite of Brantley Lake in the distance.  Don't know why they put the campground so far from the lake, but it is nice to be in a hill with views in all directions.

In my walk of maybe 1/2 mile around the campground, I saw several little groups of quail like this one.  Hard to get photos, however.

A view of the very wide dam.
Back to home, sweet home! 

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