Spotting Wildlife

Read more slice of life stories at Two Writing Teacher’s blog.

He sat by the side of the path, hidden by the shadows. Observing all the action passing by, they never noticed him sitting there. I pedaled past. I spotted him. I stopped. I couldn’t believe what I saw. I reached into my bike bag to grab my camera, but he was camera shy and he waddled into the brush. It was a groundhog.

I’ve been riding the same trail every day for the past several weeks and each day is an adventure. I never know what wildlife will cross my path. There are the typical sightings of squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, turtles, and birds. Some dart across the blacktop, quick to disappear into the vegetation. Others seem to taunt the humans on the path. They look at you with the look in their eye that says “I was here first.”

Yesterday I had six female turkeys amble across the path. They stepped slowly and carefully placing each foot with purpose. Necks wobbled back and forth as they turned their heads with eyes alert for possible danger. I’m sure they were talking to each other as they made their way across the path. Unfortunately they were too far into the brush for me to get a picture.

Maybe someday I will be able to capture a photo of some wildlife, until then my words will have to paint the picture.

Quick update: Today was the day of the snake. A huge, thick black snake lounged on the left side of the trail. Fortunately I was on the right side. A few miles down the road was a small red striped fellow. He was simply minding his own business when I came up and startled him. He thought the best plan was to turn around and slither back from whence he had come. Unfortunately that was directly in front of me. I swerved and prayed that I did not crush him. He must have survived as there was no carcass on the trail as I returned. However, there was still one more encounter with another small snake. It was uneventful, we were able to stay out of one another’s way. The air was cool, but the sun was warm. I think they all needed a touch of warmth to help them make it through the day.

15 thoughts on “Spotting Wildlife

  1. I was grossed out about the snakes! I am scared of snakes. I have seen 2 garter variety snakes in my back yard before-ohhhh! Just creeps me out! Glad you were able to tolerate seeing them.

  2. I think they all needed a touch of warmth to help them make it through the day.
    I am like the snake. I just need a touch or warmth to make it through the day.
    The shadow picture told the story.
    Thank you for sharing your rides.

  3. I laughed when I read, “Today was the day of the snake.” Something about that line just stood out and created a huge grin on my face. It should maybe be a song title. 😉 Your bike trail sounds just amazing and I love how you are noticing all these critters!

  4. Are turkeys friendlier than geese? I encountered a pack of wild geese (I think they should technically be called a gaggle of geese, but ‘gaggle’ sounds way too cute and harmless for these goose thugs) while I was running one day at the lake. They were spread from one side of the road to the other. The only way past them was through. It was darn near the scariest 30 seconds of my life (I did run quite fast that day, though).

    I wonder what your bike has to say about all these critters!

  5. Wow, sounds like you get an amazing variety of wildlife! I wish I could come with you on your walks too! 🙂 The snake story cracked me up because my mom just narrowly missed running over a snake with her bike last weekend!

  6. Judy C. says:

    Thanks for the bike ride and noticing all the wildlife that you encounter. Snakes are not my favorite and today I spied a tarantula – so beware!.

  7. Tam says:

    Words are so important. We all forget how much. Thanks for the reminder. I love the idea of turkeys talking to each other as they cross the road. I can actually see them taking each step so carefully. Beautiful art work!

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