On top of things

Ha! That title’s a joke on so many levels. HA! Levels!

But first a story. Yesterday afternoon, I was working at my desk and would hear this little tapping sound, every once in a while, quite randomly. Yet it kept repeating, and did not appear related to any motions of the desk that I might have made, and was consistent enough in tone that it warranted investigation. The problem was, it was sporadic, and I’d hear this faint little noise and lean in the direction that my ears indicated it lie, hear nothing for a bit while I examined everything on my desk (a big desk, with a hutch and shelves across the top) that might be producing noise, and then the sudden recurrence would redirect me – up, down, left, right, deosil and widdershins. Part of what had me searching was an event some months back, when a seed pod that I had collected proved to host some minuscule beetle that was gnawing its way through a seed as it sat, again, on my desk. And let me tell you, my desk has some shit on it, because I collect odd things and get involved in way too many projects and, seriously, I’m not showing you a picture because it’ll ruin your impression of me. You know, as a bug chaser and terrible title writer…

Anyway, I finally pinned it down when I remembered that, on occasion, some websites will produce sound for no good reason, and I checked my various open tabs. The culprit turned out to be the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam, which I pulled up yesterday to discover that the first bald eagle eggs in this webcammed nest were less than a week away from hatching. What I was hearing were the sounds of new messages coming in, weakly through the headphones hanging alongside my monitor, since their afternoon chat window had just opened up.

So, check out that website, because the camera views are excellent, and this nest of bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus – I just typed that accurately from memory) is occupied every spring. Yes, I know it’s not spring here, in fact for most of the world, but it’s warm enough in Fort Myers, Florida, or at least the eagles think so. Hatchling eagles are vicious and competitive little dustbunnies, almost as much as Buggato, and watching the whole process up close is quite informative. They even have infra-red cameras so you can see what’s going on at night, such as the great horned owl that has repeatedly struck at the roosting eagles, likely trying to convince them to leave the territory, in the dark hours. Go – check it out!

Now do you see why I decided on that title? Not only did I remember the site only days before the first hatching, but the eagles are sitting on top of the eggs, in a nest on top of a tree! Genius! It could even be said to refer to my finding of the mystery noise on top of (kinda) my desk. Eventually, anyway…

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