[Tweeters] A Birdwatcher Passes

Jeff Gibson gibsondesign at msn.com
Tue Sep 12 18:19:23 PDT 2017

Back in late May this year a birdwatcher passed - opinions vary- but he was around 100 years old.

Thats in dog years: Max was our dog. Max was not a "birder"- ID was not really in his resume, but Max did watch birds - a bit unusual in a dog I thought. He didn't chase them either - OK maybe scattered some gulls at the ocean beach a few times - but he did tune into birds, as I noted on our walks. Of course he was alway checking out birds in trees too.He looked up - not just nose to the ground.

Max was some kind of mutt. The pound, where we got him at about a year old, ID'd him as an Australian Shepard mix. I always thought he was Heeler mix. As for the mix who knows - everybody had a theory. He was a "heinz 57" as they say.

But whatever he was, genetics worked out real well for him. One day in the Park next door a young boy, maybe about 10 years old marched across the park straight up to me and Max, and with a sincerity I still remember announced , "Mister, that is one good looking dog", and then he went off to play. That kid was right. Max was a good looking dog.

Whatever else he had beside the birdwatching gene, was the herd dog gene - on walks with groups of people he would herd them all.

Like many dogs Max had the ''SQUIRREL!" gene, and in our neighborhood , while on leash, he'd quickly drag you over to one-even on a long leash he just never got one.

In fact the only thing I know of that Max did nab and shake around was an Aplodontia (search for my post of May 19th 2011 "Aplodontia attacks Anchor Pub!") for all the the details.

The birds Max was most entranced with were the Pileated Woodpeckers in the ravine at Forgotten Creeks. Even when they weren't axing trees he would spot them, even up in tall alders,and "point". Maybe he was part "Snohomish Woodpecker Pointer "too.

Where he is now who knows- maybe circling Pluto. He was a good dog to know.

Jeff Gibson

adios, Max
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