If lost at sea in a life raft or trapped in some way by other dire circumstances, I'd always heard one should never resort to drinking urine. This evidently doesn't apply to barn mice. This rather indelicate subject comes up because of my small morning companions. Just outside the milking room, especially at this time of year, there is lush grass heavily laden with dew, so water is plentifully available. Yet the mice will sit at the edge of a pee puddle, lapping with gusto, so intent that they won't scurry away as I come closer. Without any scientific data, I conjecture that the grain the goats eat is fermented in its process through the four chambers of the stomach. Could it be that these little creatures are getting a breakfast buzz on from goat vodka? Am I guilty of contributing to the delinquency of mice? Do I have too much time on my hands?
The quail who calls so plaintively for her lost love, Rod-RI-go, has added another query...a staccato, "Where'd you GO? Where'd you GO?" (I wish these two would get back together.) I can't find what I call the Margalo bird in my Guide, but this previously silent bird has started a guttural ratcheting sound to claim her/his territory in the barn. I've seen more flickers, a larger cousin of the woodpeckers, this year than ever before. The oriole has come back a few times; I hope he is accompanied by a mate so we can see more of these colorful birds in the future. Hummingbirds are returning in greater numbers each day and are slurping up "juice" from the feeders. The clean-up crew, the vultures, are once again basking in the morning sun, dozens of them with their wings raised. Who said I live alone?