Bird BOOK LOOK – Chapter 38 – Canada Goose + Common Loon


Missed Chapter 1? Begin HERE



 CHAPTER 38 – Honker and Dippy Arrive


The leaves of the trees turned yellow and red and brown and then began to drop, a few at first, then more and more every day until all except the spruce , pine, hemlock, fir, and cedar trees were bare. By this time most of Peter’s feathered friends of the summer had departed, and there were days when Peter had such a lonely feeling. The fur of his coat was growing thicker. The grass of the Green Meadows had turned brown. All these things were signs which Peter knew well. He knew that rough Brother North Wind and Jack Frost were on their way down from the Far North.

Peter had few friends to visit now. Johnny Chuck had gone to sleep for the winter way down in his little bedroom under ground. Grandfather Frog had also gone to sleep. So had Old Mr. Toad. Peter spent a great deal of time in the dear Old Briar-patch just sitting still and listening. What he was listening for he didn’t know. It just seemed to him that there was something he ought to hear at this time of year, and so he sat listening and wondering what he was listening for. Then, late one afternoon, there came floating down to him from high up in the sky, faintly at first then growing louder, a sound unlike any Peter had heard all the long summer through. The sound was a voice. Rather it was many voices mingled “Honk, honk, honk, honk, honk!” Peter gave a little jump.

“That’s what I’ve been listening for!” he cried. “Honker the Goose and his friends are coming. I do hope they will stop where I can pay them a call.”

He hopped out to the edge of the dear Old Briar-patch that he might see better, and looked up in the sky. High up, flying in the shape of a letter V, he saw a flock of great birds flying steadily from the direction of the Far North. By the sound of their voices he knew that they had flown far that day and were tired. One bird was in the lead and this he knew to be his old friend, Honker. Straight over his head they passed and as Peter listened to their voices he felt within him the very spirit of the Far North, that great, wild, lonely land which he had never seen and yet he had so often heard.


Autumn has arrived and leaves carpet the ground in many colors.


As Peter watched, Honker suddenly turned and headed in the direction of the Big River. Then he began to slant down, his flock following him. And presently they disappeared behind the trees along the bank of the Great River. Peter gave a happy little sigh. “They are going to spend the night there,” he thought. “When the moon comes up, I will run over there, for they will come ashore and I know just where. Now that they have arrived I know that winter is not far away. Honker’s voice is as sure a sign of the coming of winter as is Winsome Bluebird’s that spring will soon be here.”

Peter could hardly wait for the coming of the Dark Shadows, and just as soon as they had crept out over the Green Meadows he started for the Big River. He knew just where to go, because he knew that Honker and his friends would rest and spend the night in the same place they had stopped at the year before. He knew that they would remain out in the middle of the Big River until the Dark Shadows had made it quite safe for them to swim in. He reached the bank of the Big River just as sweet Mistress Moon was beginning to throw her silvery light over the Great World. There was a sandy bar in the Great River at this point, and Peter squatted on the bank just where this sandy bar began.

It seemed to Peter that he had sat there half the night, when really it was only a short time, before he heard a low signal out in the Dark Shadows which covered the middle of the Big River. It was the voice of Honker. Then Peter saw little silvery lines moving on the water and presently a dozen great shapes appeared in the moonlight. Honker and his friends were swimming in. The long neck of each of those great birds was stretched to its full height, and Peter knew that each bird was listening for the slightest suspicious sound. Slowly they drew near, Honker in the lead. They were a picture of perfect caution. When they reached the sandy bar they remained quiet, looking and listening for some time. Then, sure that all was safe, Honker gave a low signal and at once a low gabbling began as the big birds relaxed their watchfulness and came out on the sandy bar, all save one. That one was the guard, and he remained with neck erect on watch. Some swam in among the rushes growing in the water very near to where Peter was sitting and began to feed. Others sat on the sandy bar and dressed their feathers. Honker himself came ashore close to where Peter was sitting.

“Oh Honker,” cried Peter, “I’m so glad you’re back here safe and sound.”


Fall landscape is a carpet of colors.


Honker gave a little start, and then instantly recognizing Peter he came over close to him. As he stood there in the moonlight he was truly handsome. His throat and a large patch on each side of his head were white. The rest of his head and long, slim neck were black. His short tail was also black. His back, wings, breast and sides were a soft grayish-brown. He was white around the base of his tail and he wore a white collar.

“Hello, Peter,” he said. “It is good to have an old friend greet me. I certainly am glad to be back safe and sound, for the hunters with guns have been at almost every one of our resting places, and it has been hard work to get enough to eat. It is a relief to find one place where there are no hunters.”

“Have you come far?” asked Peter.

“Yes, very far, Peter,” replied Honker. “And we still have very far to go. I shall be thankful when the journey is over, for on me depends the safety of all those with me, and it is a great responsibility.”

“Will winter soon be here?” asked Peter eagerly.

“Rough Brother North Wind and Jack Frost were right behind us,” replied Honker. “You know we stay in the Far North just as long as we can. Already the place where we nested is frozen and covered with snow. For the first part of the journey we kept only just ahead of the snow and ice, and as we drew near to where men make their homes we were forced to make longer journeys each day, for the places where it is safe to feed and rest are few and far between. Now we shall hurry on until we reach the place in the far away South where we will make our winter home.”

Just then Honker was interrupted by wild, strange sounds from the middle of the Great River. It sounded like crazy laughter. Peter jumped at the sound, although Honker merely chuckled. “It’s Dippy the Loon, he spent the summer in the Far North not far from us,” said Honker. “He started south just before we did.”

“I wish he would come in here so that I can get a good look at him and make his acquaintance,” said Peter.


Fall foliage sends a signal that winter is just around the corner.


“He may, although I doubt it,” replied Honker. “He and his mate are great ones to keep to themselves. Then, too, they don’t have to come ashore for food. You know Dippy feeds altogether on fish. He really has an easier time on the long journey than we do, because he can get his food without running so much risk of being shot by the hunters. He practically lives on the water. He’s the most awkward fellow on land of any one I know.”

“Why should he be any more awkward on land then you?” asked Peter, his curiosity aroused at once.

“Because,” replied Honker, “Old Mother Nature has given him very short legs and has placed them so far back on his body that he can’t keep his balance to walk, and has to use his wings and bill to help him over the ground. On shore he is about the most helpless thing you can imagine. On water he is another fellow altogether. He’s just as much at home under water as on top. My, how that fellow can dive! That’s where he has the advantage of us geese. You know we can’t dive. He could swim clear across this river under water if he wanted to, and he can go so fast under water that he can catch a fish. It is because his legs have been placed so far back that he can swim so fast. You know his feet are just simply big paddles. Another funny thing is that he can sink right down in the water when he wants to, with nothing other than his head out. I envy him that. It would be a lot easier for us geese to escape the hunters if we could sink down that way.”

“Has he a bill like yours?” asked Peter.

“No, his bill is stout, straight, and sharp pointed to hold onto slippery fish,” replied Honker. “He is pretty nearly as big as I am, and his back, wings, tail and neck are black with bluish or greenish appearance in the sun. His back and wings are spotted with white, and there are streaks of white on his throat and the sides of his neck. On his breast and below he is all white. You certainly ought to get acquainted with Dippy, Peter, for there isn’t anybody quite like him.”

“I’d like to,” replied Peter. “However, if he never comes to shore I guess I will have to be content to know him just by his voice. I certainly never will forget that. It’s about as crazy sounding as the voice of Old Man Coyote, and that is saying a great deal.”


Curious Capkins connect to the colors of the fallen fall foliage.


“There’s one thing I forgot to tell you,” said Honker. “Dippy can’t fly from the land; he must be on the water in order to get up in the air.”

“You can, can’t you?” asked Peter.

“Yes, I can,” replied Honker. “Why, we geese get a lot of our food on land. When it is safe to do so we visit the grain fields and pick up the grain that has been shaken out during harvest. We can rise from either land or water equally well. Now if you’ll excuse me, Peter, I’ll take a nap. My, I am tired! And I’ve got a long journey tomorrow.”

So Peter politely bade Honker and his relatives goodnight and left them in peace to rest on the sandy bar in the Big River.


P.L.A.Y. in Place Projects


Try these activities to extend your bird story adventures:

  • Visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology – ALL ABOUT BIRDS –  Canada Goose
  • Visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology – ALL ABOUT BIRDS –  Common Loon
  • Visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology – BIRD ACADEMY –  Loon Communication
  • Q/A –Questions with answers to keep this conversation going are available for Wild Geese (p. 130-136)  in the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock offered FREE online HERE.
  • Another option is to get a copy of Fifty Favorite Birds Coloring Book by Lisa Bonforte and some colored pencils to complete the drawing of a Canada Goose (p9).

FYI -This coloring book is an excellent companion for this bird story series with most of the 50 birds represented as characters throughout the chapters.


Source: Burgess Bird Book for Children by Thornton Burgess

P.L.A.Y. has provided a new online version of all 45 chapters of this updated and annotated 100+ year old public domain classic to:

  • be suitable for the 21st century family by having the Thornton Burgess woodland characters evolve to model mindfulness and loving kindness
  • highlight and bring awareness to the New England nature settings and offer an opportunity to learn more about birds and other woodland animals through this story adventure
  • create story extension moments through P.L.A.Y. suggested activities and investigations for making new nature connections generated by the reader’s own curiosity
  • encourage families to keep their own nature notebooks for drawing, writing, painting, and recording their own local daily outdoor P.L.A.Y. adventures.

P.L.A.Y. Time – Pass it on!

BOOK LOOK – Winter Is Coming by Tony Johnston


 ~ ~ ~ BOOK LOOK ~ ~ ~


Winter Is Coming

by Tony Johnston


Karen’s short + long of it with P.L.A.Y.ful story preview & P.L.A.Y.-filled activity adventure suggestions.


P.L.A.Y.ful story preview (short):

Watching + Waiting + Wishing for Winter

Fleeting Fall

Childhood Charm

Animals in Action

Sketching Through A Season

P.L.A.Y.-filled activity adventure suggestions (long):

  • Challenge: Experiment with patience and quiet and “see” what you can “hear” visiting one spot daily.
  • Super Challenge: Focus simply on one type of plant, or specific weather feature (temperature/precipitation/etc), or telltale sign of one common local animal as a way to specifically observe seasonal change.
  • Super-Duper Challenge: How do you know when one season is over and another has begun? What clues do you experience on your Nature Adventures?
  • Super Spectacular Challenge: Does the shifting of the season happen at the same time each year? Or does it feel like it changes a bit? Be a citizen scientist and look back in your nature adventure journals to see if there are any changes to when a season begins and ends.

Capkins LOVE to be read to – especially P.L.A.Y.-full nature themed story books!❤ ❤ ❤

  Be sure to visit and support your local library! ❤ ❤ ❤


 

Fall #12 – Nature Alliteration Adventure


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


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A November treasure quest for you & your curious Capkin

is to search in nature for . . .

” Locked in Leaf “

Bonus “I see” +  “Icy”

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My curious Capkin & I found this treasure to match the description.

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What other natural treasures did you find in your P.L.A.Y. today? 🙂


Draw, write, color, and creatively capture your discoveries

on the pages of your Nature Adventure book!

Potluck P.L.A.Y. – Autumn Acorn Abundance!


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


My walks this week included some P.L.A.Y.-full . . .   

Autumn Acorn Abundance!

Pausing and being present provided the opportunity to see these special striped acorns still attached to their caps.

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Curious Capkins want to know: Why do some years have more acorns than others? What impact does this have?

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“Marble Madness” ensued as the abundance of acorns made for tricky foot travel.

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Bonus Bounty!

According to the Farmer’s Almanac Folklore an abundance of acorn means a snowy winter (AND fat squirrels)!

I’ll be curious to see how this actually P.L.A.Y.s out!

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Visit my video on PINTEREST (here) for a simple snapshot of “Autumn’s Acorn Abundance” with a batch of beautiful oak leaves in the sunshine.


What other natural treasures did you find in your P.L.A.Y. today? 🙂


Draw, write, color, and creatively capture your discoveries

on the pages of your Nature Adventure book!

❤ ❤ ❤

Potluck P.L.A.Y. – One Day Wild Wonders


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


 These P.L.A.Y. wonders were all found on one day’s walk in the wild. 

(also known as) 

Fabulously Fun Fall Finds!

1st year harvesting Autumn Olives (oh my tartness!) to freeze for smoothies, pies, sauces, with lycopene/Omega 3/ Vitamin C, A, E!

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Nature’s velcro? Fun for landscape art parts!

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Fall can be fun and a little “deflating”. Poof!

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Taking the time to look up into the sunlit forest canopy.

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Bonus!

I saw “Mr. Prickly Porky” on his rounds in the forest which is not typical during daylight hours. He was quite large, moved a bit faster than I expected, and made for the base of his hollow tree home when he knew of my presence (especially hearing the bells on my walking sticks).

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Visit my video on PINTEREST (here) to experience the simple gift of “Fall in the Forest – Wind & Water Wonders”.

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Fall #22 – Nature Alliteration Adventure


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


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An October treasure quest for you & your curious Capkin

is to search in nature for . . .

Several + Silent + Scattered

Bonus Colors Green/Yellow/Orange/Red all in a Sylvan Setting

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My curious Capkin & I found this treasure to match the description.

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What other natural treasures did you find in your P.L.A.Y. today? 🙂


Draw, write, color, and creatively capture your discoveries

on the pages of your Nature Adventure book!

Fall #14 – Nature Alliteration Adventure


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


❤ ❤ ❤

An October treasure quest for you & your curious Capkin

is to search in nature for . . .

Varied + Vibrant + Veined

BonusGreen/Yellow/Orange/Red

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My curious Capkin & I found this treasure to match the description.

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What other natural treasures did you find in your P.L.A.Y. today? 🙂


Draw, write, color, and creatively capture your discoveries

on the pages of your Nature Adventure book!

Fall #29 – Nature Alliteration Adventure


Purchase HereP.L.A.Y. Nature Alliteration Adventure Guide Books


❤ ❤ ❤

A September treasure quest for you & your curious Capkin

is to search in nature for . . .

A Fabulous *Fall* Foliage Find!

Bonus Color Challenge Golds + Greens + Reds 

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My curious Capkin & I found this treasure to match the description.

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What other natural treasures did you find in your P.L.A.Y. today? 🙂


Draw, write, color, and creatively capture your discoveries

on the pages of your Nature Adventure book!

BOOK LOOK – Nature Alliteration Adventures: The Fall Season Guide by Karen L. Willard


 ~ ~ ~ BOOK LOOK ~ ~ ~


Nature Alliteration Adventures: The Fall Guide 

by Karen L. Willard

To purchase go to my Amazon Author Page HERE

To see sample pages of this P.L.A.Y. Fall Guide click HERE and HERE

For more samples scroll to the bottom of this post!


Karen’s short + long of it with P.L.A.Y.ful preview & P.L.A.Y.-filled activity adventure suggestions.


P.L.A.Y.ful preview (short):

Amazing Alliteration Adventures with Outdoor Opportunities for All!

Nature Noticing & Needs Your P.L.A.Y.-ful Participation!

Fall Foliage & Forest & Fields & Other Great Finds

P.L.A.Y.-filled Potential & Possibilities

 

P.L.A.Y.-filled companion activity adventure suggestions (long):

  • Challenge: In treasure seeking style walk outdoors with one set of the alliteration adventure clue words from a page in this book. See what you notice in nature and record your findings in your own copy of this P.L.A.Y. guide book. Did you find something to match your adventure clues? multiple things?
  • Super Challenge: Continue to walk about, wonder and wander, and see if you can add more alliteration words to this clue to match what you have found. Example: If you were looking for “puffy + plain + pedestal” perhaps you can now add “purple or pleated”!
  • Super-Duper Challenge: As a family or with friends walk about in nature and create your own new set of alliteration adventures to challenge one another or send them on to challenge a friend or email them to Karen@passionatelearningallyear.com !
  • Spectacular Super Duper Challenge: Re-tell your Capkin the story of how you found today’s adventure clues and capture it in your P.L.A.Y. guide book to revisit and read again, and again. Enjoyable!

Capkins LOVE to be read to AND love to P.L.A.Y. outdoors.

Purchase a nature guide, join in the fun, and support P.L.A.Y. today! ❤ ❤ ❤


Sample Pages:

Nature Alliteration Adventure #4 – Fall Guide – Capkins collecting clues BEFORE they go outdoors to P.L.A.Y. !

Nature Alliteration Adventure #4 – Fall Guide – The curious Capkins captured this on the page AFTER their outdoor P.L.A.Y.!

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BOOK LOOK – A Leaf Can Be . . . by Laura Purdie Salas


 ~ ~ ~ BOOK LOOK ~ ~ ~


A Leaf Can Be . . . 

by Laura Purdie Salas


Karen’s short + long of it with P.L.A.Y.ful story preview & P.L.A.Y.-filled activity adventure suggestions.


P.L.A.Y.ful story preview (short):

Life of a Leaf – Amazing! It can be most Anything!

Dynamic Discoveries

Potential & Possibilities

Four Season Finds

 

P.L.A.Y.-filled companion activity adventure suggestions (long):

  • Challenge: Treasurer hunt style -can you see Laura’s suggestions of what a leaf can be – tree topper, rain stopper, food maker, etc.? An opportunity to take a moment to notice in nature and create a check list in your journal.
  • Super Challenge: Walk about, wonder and wander, and see if you can add to Laura’s list of what a leaf can be. Example:  a “leaf munchie” = goaties in our barnyard were eating them like potato chips!
  • Super-Duper Challenge: Fall Fun = make a leaf pile when the trees have released them to the ground. Estimate how many leaves it takes to make the pile by filling a small bucket or container and counting the leaves. How many buckets worth do you think you have? How many leaves does it take to make your “pile grower”?

Capkins LOVE to be read to – especially P.L.A.Y.-full nature themed story books!

  Be sure to visit and support your local library = All Good! ❤ ❤ ❤