Saturday, 22 March 2014

Still a Marshmallow World and Bird News

Snowy Backyard Today

I just got in the door.  I took the dogs for a walk up the trail and after all the fresh snow...15 cm since this morning, everything looked Christmasy and magical.  It was a little plodding underfoot and even the dogs stuck to the imprint of the trail. It is the kind of snow that has a stick to it and would make  wonderful snowballs or a snowman.
I read the local town paper earlier and I am always pleased to learn of all the local happenings.  It is one way to keep up with the occasions; last week it featured all the Shrove Tuesday pancake suppers, this edition featured St.Patrick's Day celebrations.  I noticed all the photos were of happy seniors who seemed to enjoy getting into the whole St.Paddy's Day theme...sporting green kerchiefs and eating bowls of Irish stew.  This year for the first time a gluten free version was also served.  It seems most of these things are run by the churches; maybe that was why there were no photos of green beer being drunk. 
I'm most interested in a birding column called Nature's Way which always provides information about birds in our area.  I learned two things from this week's column.  DNA has not just affected the criminal justice world but has had ramifications in the birding world as well.  In categorizing birds for inclusion in bird books, until now they have been organized according to their evolutionary history with the most primitive birds in the front.  The advent of DNA testing has resulted in significant changes for a few of my bird friends.  In particular, it appears falcons are not in the hawk family; they are actually more closely related to parrots and songbirds and in future books will take their correct place with them.  I think it is interesting how much ornithologists had gotten right without this scientific tool at their disposal.
I spent most of the morning in the kitchen; I'll share my efforts with you tomorrow.