Friday, February 8, 2013

clean-up crew





When they pronounce a thing dead, it's dead.  

"Ni su'cuyi, gar kyr'adyc, ni partayli, gar darasuum," in the Mandalorian tongue of "Star Wars" speak.

Ever vigilant, they're drawn to death; have an eye for it. Yes, that's a vulture. When a death occurs, they move in like a group of staid morticians, clothed in ebony. Solemn. Nodding their heads in agreement. It's time to do their job. Begin decomposition. Nature's clean up crew, patrolling the highways, removing roadkill. 

Some studies estimate up to one million animals are struck and killed every 24 hours in this country. Dogs. Cats. Raccoons. Opossums. Deers. Squirrels. Groundhogs. All are fair game, so to speak, if they inadvertently venture out onto the asphalt.

Driving back from Hiwassee, Shearwater and I encountered a procession of black vultures strolling across Blythe Ferry Road. We stopped the car and paid our respects. Dearly beloved. This time it was a big job, a white-tailed deer. Going to take awhile. Don't mind us.

Thank goodness we have vultures, or it would get messy out there. 

NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH! Recently, Ijams volunteer Rex McDaniel caught a black vulture just doing its job: cleaning up the road. (If you are an opossum, this could be kin.)


4 comments:

Dorothy said...

These birds are SO ugly, but it's nice that God provided a clean-up crew!!!

Marie said...

We all have our jobs to do!

Marie said...

We all have our jobs to do!

Patricia Lichen said...

Oooh, what great writing! Wish I'd said that!