by Marilyn and Keith Davis

"Rainbows and Gambel’s Quail"

quail        You’ve heard the phrase . . . "but it’s not as hot here, because it’s a dry heat." That may have been the case in the past, but this year brought moist air and lots of heat. Rain fell all the way around us in Washington County, but none fell on Bloomington Ranches. We hesitated to turn on our lawn sprinklers and to water our pasture because we thought the rain falling in the distance, would soon be here. It didn’t happen. Finally, thinking it would bring rain (like washing your car always does), we turned on the sprinklers. There was still no rain. It is really disappointing to see clouded skies all around you and no rain to cool your area. To make the day better, we went for one of our evening drives to check on the distant rain clouds, and to look for birds. It was around 6:00 p.m. when we headed for the Washington Fields.

        Wow, what a great trip! The angle of the sunlight caused the sky to set up a huge rainbow. The gray rain clouds that filled the sky were tinted with a bit of gold and maroon. Then to top this, a second rainbow made its way into the sky. The rainbows became more vivid, as the sun varied, with purples, greens, reds, and yellows. As the shafts of sunlight varied in intensity, the rainbows changed from pastel to vibrant colors. At one point we stopped looking for birds and parked just to watch the sky. While sitting parked, a flock of Quail (babies, teens, and adults) made their way in a fast two-step across the road, reminding us of why we came out that evening. Rainbows and Quail. It was a beautiful sight. As the sun went over the horizon, the rainbows disappeared, and it was time for the Quail to find a place of safety to spend the night. Soon all was quiet and so we drove home.

        One of the beauties of being out and about in Washington County, looking for birds, is that you may get in on one of the wonderful accidents of nature which happens all the time. But only if you make an effort to get out, will you be there when it does happen.

        Joy Woodward is the artist of the Gambel’s Quail. For questions about Quail, or the upcoming Red Cliffs Audubon Pot Luck Social on Wednesday, September 12, at 6:00 pm at the Tonaquint Nature Center call 435 673-0996. Field Trips also begin in September on Saturday the 15th. Pick up this year's schedule at the Pot Luck Social or watch for it on line at . The public is welcome.


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