Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Where is the Stealth Raven?

The Stealth Raven is around and about!  I have been putting out 2 raw chicken eggs into the platform feeder each day if the previous 2 eggs have disappeared.  Some days it is obvious that the crows have had an egg snack.  They peck at the eggs and leave egg shells all around the feeder.  Other days the eggs have clean disappeared ala the Stealth Raven.  To see the Stealth Raven in action I have to be looking out the window at the moment when the raven flies in to pick up an egg.  This is a problem.  Up on Mt. Veeder the house had floor to ceiling windows everywhere so it was easy to monitor the action in the great outdoors.  Here the windows are of normal size and configuration- how I miss those big windows on the world.  So now I have to come up with a new plan for sighting the Stealth Raven.  This could take considerable thought.  How about a motion activated alarm that would ring on my Kindle? on an ipod? on my watch? Oh the possibilities are endless.
Last week we went out to Bodega Head at Bodega Bay- you know- the sight of the Alfred Hitchcock movie "The Birds".  I never saw the movie because it gave black birds such a bad name for YEARS.  I would not support such a movie.  Anyway I went out there to enjoy the view of the Pacific Ocean and to visit the resident raven pair.  I took along some bread and crackers.  It was difficult to feed these ravens because the darn seagulls are faster at the draw and get the food first.  So I would wait for the ravens to fly by the open back end of my van and then I would throw out the food.  I saw one raven do a 180 degree turn in midair to grab the food I had thrown out.  Wow that was quite the maneuver!
We are going to the Scottish Games this weekend at the Pleasanton Fair Grounds.  There is a man there who walks around with a raven puppet/doll on his head.  This raven is dressed up like a Scottish King- with crown, kilt, the whole kit.  It is so neat.  I want one.  I am going to look for this man and take his picture for future reference.  This could be my next project.  I just finished my Raven Tote Bag.  It turned out quite well if I do say so myself.  When my daughter comes up to visit I am going to have her take a picture and show me how to add it to this blog.  I have to get with the 21st century I suppose.  I am hoping to hear a raven call today- how I love that sound!

Monday, August 15, 2011


This morning I awoke to the sound of raven song.  I got up and looked outside.  A raven was sitting on top of the tallest tree around here- a very tall redwood tree.  He was calling for all he was worth.  Then I heard the sound of a juvenile raven making alot of racket.  Oh it was so wonderful to hear the raven fuss, oh I meant song!  I immediately went outside and put 2 eggs in the platform feeder.  When I got back inside I looked out the window- what??? one the eggs was already gone.  A raven must have been watching for me.  That egg disappeared in the time it took me to come inside, close the door and look out the window.  I say I have a stealth raven in residence.  I like the idea of a stealth raven.  I then watched the platform feeder periodically to see if the other egg would disappear but alas my crow bunch arrived and made short order of the egg.  It is difficult here with both ravens and crows in residence.  I like them both but they do not like each other.  Raven does not come around if there is a murder of crows in residence.  I don't blame raven.  The crows are a feisty bunch.  Last night there was such a bunch of crows in the tray feeder that they were jumping up and down to get a spot.  A one point I got worried.  It looked like the crows were tossing something black around in the air.  Was it a dead crow- yikes.  No it was just a battle for position power. 

Each morning I put black oil sunflower seeds in the platform feeder tray for the song birds.  Crow food must be in limited supply right now because the crows have been camping out in the tray and eating all the seeds.  Usually these are left for the small song birds.  So I then I fill up the tray again.  The 25 lb bags of seed have gone from $7.98 to $17.98!! It must be the freight charge to get them to the store or bad weather in the midwest or something.  So this year when the volunteer sunflower plants have come up from spilled seed, I watered them and let them grow.  I now have a healthy patch of big, bright sunny sunflowers.  I never have grown them before and I like them.  So all is well today in the Napa Valley.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


This morning when I got up, I looked outside and there were 2 ravens on the platform feeder.  They took up the whole feeder while sitting on it.  I realized how big those ravens really are when compared with my crow buddies.  The ravens took flight when I went to look at them out the back door.  One landed in a big tree in the next yard.  I was admiring him and his BIG size.  I went outside and put 2 hardboiled eggs into the platform feeder and then I went away to play with Andy the old cat.  The next time I looked, the 2 eggs were gone.  I am so glad that the ravens got them.  No sign of any egg shells in the feeder or on the ground which means the ravens picked them up and flew off with them!  The crows cannot pick up a chicken egg.  They eat them by pecking at them and then leave the shells all around the feeder or in the feeder.  An hour later I heard a fledgling crow out back making alot of racket.  He wanted a treat.  I went and put some rather old cheese out in the feeder and baby crow (very large) was very happy with that treat.
I just finished constructing a RAVEN BAG.  It is a tote bad fashioned after a crow bag pattern by Elinor Peace Bailey.  I converted it to a raven by changing the beak.  It is so fine a creation even if I do say so myself.  Elinor says that your life will not be dull if you dress funny!!  Either you have it or you don't!  Well I certainly have it with regards to toting around a raven tote bag!  Here is to funny dressing!