The second night of counting woodcock was uneventful. Most of the stops came up empty. No matter how carefully I listened for the slightest hint of a peent, we counted birds at only three or four stops.
There’s one stop I’ll probably change by a tenth of a mile next year. If I stop one-tenth earlier than the usual four-tenths, I’ll count in a quieter open space. This particular stop has a lot of very noisy wood and tree frogs, and peepers. I heard the first bullfrog croak of the year here. As if the frogs aren’t already too loud, the stream was louder than I remember it ever running even though we hadn’t had much rain. Changing up one stop won’t make a difference in the remaining stops; they’ll start again at the “normal” place.
Near the end of this run there’s a small house with a large pasture. There are nice looking dairy cows here, and they’re usually near the fence by the road. We’ve seen a lot of turkeys in this pasture and always look for them when we’re there. Two years ago we stopped to count just in time to hear a turkey gobble. A coyote yipped and the turkey gobbled again. The coyote yipped, and again, a gobble. After the third gobble the coyote howled and the turkey…shut up. And people say turkeys are stupid.