Page 9 - July 7, 2021
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{ 8 }  SNJ Today  |  JULY 7, 2021                                                                                     JULY 7, 2021  |  SNJToday.com   { 9 }
                                                                                                      RAMPARTS BOOT


      a red fox came running across the street
      with a mother hen in fast pursuit. There
      was nothing passive about this mother;
      she meant business. The fox clearly
                                                                                  SUPPORTING
      understood.                                                                 SUPPORTING
                                                                                     OUR
        I was home two years ago when our
      hen’s brood hatched so I was playing                                           OUR
      paparazzi. However, the hen finally
                                                                                     MILITARY
      made it abundantly clear that she wasn’t                                       MILITARY
      putting up with my photo sessions any
      longer. When I advanced she advanced
      and stood tall, raised her tail, opened her
      wings slightly to increase her perceived
      size and yes—frowned at me with a take-  their ducklings entirely.
      no-prisoners look. It was clear to me she   I recently watched a video where a
      meant to protect her chicks from me and   hen turkey was crossing an open road
      my invading lens.                   with her poults. She tilted her head and
        These birds have a complex        looked skyward where she perceived a
      vocabulary when talking turkey, and   predator. Whispering putts, she almost
      many hunters know how to decipher it.   purred to her dozen tennis-ball-sized
      They “cluck” to reassemble flocks that   little ones. They quickly dove into the tall
      have been flushed. “Yelping” is often   unmown grass at the base of a roadside
      a signal from a lonesome hen, one of   mailbox, where not a blade then stirred.
      the most frequently employed calls of   By staying motionless they escaped
      turkey hunters. They “gobble” on roosts   detection.
      to attract females and define territories.   I have also noticed two hens
      “Purrs” are used in various ways and   combining their broods—two sentries
      the volume often is telling. Loud rapid   being better than one. More watchful
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      “purrs” signal aggression and soft “purrs”   eyes allow one adult to be aggressive   Layaway   Available      •  Gif t C ertifica  tes
      are just a way for members of the flock   while the other guards the flock.
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      to communicate their position so they   Additionally, by combining broods there          W  e C arry Men’     s Sizes 5–17
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      can travel together in cover where they   are more small ones scrambling about,   W omen’ s  Sizes  4–13  •   Childr en’  s  Sizes  0  &  up
      don’t always have eye contact or are more   making it more difficult to pick one out
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      focused on ground feeding.          of a flock. And lastly there is always   Orthopedic & Diabetic Shoes    •  Shoe R epair  •  Shoe Dyeing
        Let’s talk about strategies. If you   the principle embodied by the joke of
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      advance on a hen with her brood of   the man who runs from a bear. His           CLIP & SA  VE         C OUPON
 diligent mother went undetected by our  turkeys she will often zigzag behind   companion says, “What are you doing?   $  00
 dogs. Eureka!   them retreating into the forest, while the   You can’t outrun a bear.” To which his   5
 Beyond having feathers that blend   chicks advance in a serpentine pattern   friend replies, “I know, I only have to   OFF
 into natural backgrounds, ground-nesting  ahead of her. This is intended to lure   outrun you!” These concepts prove to be
 birds’ eggs look much like the ground   you away from her young. Since she   true; there is safety in numbers and only   $25 or more
 they are laid upon. Beach nesting bird   is much easier to track, and their size   the strong (or swift, or smart) survive.  Not to be combined with any other offer. Expires 7/30/21.
 eggs resemble sand, turkey eggs are   makes them harder to see, you lose sight   For birds the ultimate defense
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 blotched with earthen colors. These are   of them as you are drawn to her. Then if   mechanism is flight. On yet another of   CLIP & SAVE         COUPON
 passive camouflage strategies at their   she chooses, she can dash off, speeding   our jaunts I saw young turkeys fly not   $  00
 finest.   through the woods at as much as 20   so gracefully but high enough to alight                        10
 Each morning my husband and I go   miles an hour, and you lose her as well—  on the branch of a tree about 10 feet up,              OFF
 on a walk. The first leg is along a road   wallaaaah, magic trick pulled off.   surely out of many predators’ grasps.
 adjacent to wooded property. We have   Two other well-known strategies are   When four weeks of age they are about   $100 or more
 been seeing a bearded hen with 18 chicks  utilized by two different ground-nesting   the size of a quail and can attain heights   Not to be combined with any other offer. Expires 7/30/21.
 in our yard, and other broods, too. In   species. The killdeer feigns a broken   of 25 to 50 feet to roost with their
 the second week of June a hen bird was  wing, thus leading would-be predators   mother. It takes them a few minutes to
 making incessant “putts,” a turkey’s   away from its nest. Wood duck mothers   line up on a branch on either side of her
 alarm call. Not soft little putts emitted in  tumble along stream and pond banks   and then she stretches out her wings and
 a whisper but very loud continual putts.  in low brush, looking as if they have a   covers them up, illustrating the adage
 “Something’s not right,” I remarked. “She  broken wing and leg. They do this so   “taking someone under your wing.” For   639 Landis A ve.  • V ineland
 is going bonkers, signaling distress. There  rapidly that you are startled and drawn   young turkeys that’s a cozy and a safe
 must be a fox after her poults.” Just then  to paying attention to them, missing   place to be! n  856-691-1180 • AlsShoesNJ.com
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