[Tweeters] Skagit Blue Jay and toad

Gary Bletsch garybletsch at yahoo.com
Sun Nov 23 19:17:29 PST 2008

Dear Tweeters,

Thanks to Ryan Merrill for giving me the impetus to try for the Blue Jay on Pleasant Ridge. I'd been too lazy, then too busy, to go for this bird, and then figured that it was gone. Today, though, the bird was easy to see. Also in the brush, just a hundred meters north of the Blue Jay spot, was a Hutton's Vireo.

However, the find of the day was a toad! Coincidentally, I have been reading "The Wind in the Willows" to my sixth-grade class of late. It's the first time I've picked up that book in about 35 years. My pupils have had a tough time with the vocabulary and syntax, but they have been patient. Anyway, toads, specifically a certain Mr. Toad, have been on my mind these past weeks. Meanwhile, it has been at least ten years since I saw a toad in Washington, although I used to have them in my yard at Concrete. As a matter of fact, I used to see them all the time in forest habitats, but they seem to have disappeared, even from the hinterlands.

The toad I found today was a wee one, walking very slowly across Valentine Road. The macadam was nice and warm, but I am sure this particular Master Toad would have ended up the victim of a motor-car, had he been left to his own feeble devices. I picked him up and put him in the leaf litter a few meters into the woods, no doubt to effect a reunion with Mole and Rat.

Have other Tweeters seen many non-literary toads of late?

Yours truly,

Gary Bletsch   Near Lyman, Washington (Skagit County), USA   garybletsch at yahoo.com    

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