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I walked a short stretch of the Katy Trail south of McBaine, Boone Co.,
yesterday afternoon.

A movement in a small brush pile emerged as a Wood Thrush.  It quickly
froze, but its eye was not on me.  Instead, it was glaring at a Northern
Waterthrush about 3 feet from it.  I could swear I was picking up
telepathic signals--the thrush was broadcasting to the waterthrush:
"Stop that tail bounce stuff!  She's following your movements and they
give us both away."  The waterthrush was not telepathic.

A second surprise was a gorgeous milk snake lying on the trail.  We had
a brief conversation before it slowly departed.

The third encounter was a call I knew I should know.  The question
resolved into a Summer Tanager--then there were several--all coming into
the patch of woods at the base of a bluff.  I watched one male chase
another from the immediate vicinity of a lovely female.  Then the ticcy
ticcy tuk tuk began, and I was the recipient of quite a scolding from
first the female, then both.  Yes, I was whistling at them, so I guess
their ire was just.  But the surprise was that as they scolded me they
both raised beautiful crests--yes, crests as fluffy as sported by any
cardinal!  Learn something everyday--it's a good feeling.

Edge Wade
Columbia, MO
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