Wild in the city

Within two miles of the Capitol and less than a mile from downtown, raccoons, possums, great blue herons, and gray foxes are common sights for those who know when and where to look. I even saw an armadillo for the first time in quite a while not long ago. Turkey vultures are in the streets every day tidying up what’s left when an unwise squirrel selects the wrong time to cross. Screech owls are heard and seen quite frequently. A rarer sight is the barred owl. We had seen them out at Hornsby Bend but never such a good view right from the front porch as we sat out there enjoying the fresh air yesterday evening. As she flew off silently after a long perch, there was not a sound to be heard. Such a wingspread, such a large object in flight, such bulk and such ease, and no noise at all! I hope she’s living and hunting nearby all winter long.

2 Comments so far

  1. Prentiss Riddle (unregistered) on February 5th, 2005 @ 9:30 pm

    My freshman year at UT, some 26 (gulp!) years ago, I saw an armadillo strolling down the sidewalk on 21st Street by the Ransom Center. I think that’s the only armadillo I’ve ever seen in the city. I assume they’re all around, or have they decided they no longer enjoy rubbing elbows with humans for some reason?

  2. Rantor (unregistered) on February 6th, 2005 @ 6:42 pm

    One’s more likely to see amardillos who have met an untimely demise than a living, breathing specimen these days, alas. It has truly been a long time since I’ve seen a roadrunner /chaparral anywhere around here. A trip out to Griffin’s western-sear store usually meant at least one sighting.

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