©2012 Claudia Ballard
Matted to 8x10 acrylic on Arches WC paper
Dark wood frame under glass
One day last week I heard my husband calling me softly to come to the back door. He had heard a ruckus in the backyard from our usually quiet cocker. A small flock of wild turkeys had wandered through the yard and Bonnie did not know quite what to make of such big birds. Apparently she charged the fence and the gobbler turned on her, ruffling his feathers, and charged back. Totally taken aback for a bird to behave that way towards her, the bird dog, she retreated.
The gobbler was shielding his flock by staying between us and the hens while they made their way into the woods on the edge of our property. Bonnie studied this some more and rushed the fence and gave one small bark, just to let him know this was her yard after all. Once the hens had slipped into the cover of the undergrowth, the gobbler too disappeared into the woods and they vanished.
When we first lived here, before development around us, we would see huge flocks of turkeys on a regular basis, pecking their way through the tall Bahia grass and snacking on the acorns under the large oaks. It was a grand sight!