The Quail Diaries–Reflection, Part 1

I caught no quail the morning of my last day (yesterday). I think that the squirrel digging into the trap had something to do with this.

While we let the traps sit, and the squirrel excavated, Devlin and I walked down into the fire zone.

I have been using the “Escape Route” cut by the fire fighters to get down to the burned area. During our hike we were surrounded by hummingbirds displaying like crazy with huge aerial drops. I am, embarrassingly enough, not sure what species. They are most likely to be Annas because these are widespread, and I saw a flash of red. I am a bit confused, though, as the red seemed only on the throat. I am no birder.

According to the Sand Diego Natural History Museum, San Diego County Bird Atlas Project website : “[m]ales display to other males and possibly to nothing at all.” At least, that is how it appears to us.

Devlin was less interested in the hummers–he wanted to make it to the top of Fire Mountain as he called it–the unburned hill just above the spot where the large fire started.

This spot was marked by two sticky notes attached to a branch. It can be seen from the side of my parent’s house.

We made it to the top of fire mountain and then walked down, towards where Devlin had spotted the smoke the night before. I looked around and found a path down towards the north. I headed down the path and found what looked to be the site of the campfire–ashes, a grill, cans and footprints.

I was nervous the entire time, and clearly displayed bad judgement in going down there while Devlin was out in the field with me. I did ask him to wait back, but still. Luckily, no one was around, and the footprints led off down the path, towards where I had seen what I suspected was the man who had lit this fire, walking up the street.


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