Tag Archives: birds


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The cliff swallows have returned to Madroño Ranch. They’ve expanded their housing development under the western eave of the Main House to several eastern eaves, one of which we can see from inside the house. We watched them build their … Continue reading

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Look out of any window

Last week we spent several days at the Chisos Mountains Lodge, in Big Bend National Park, with our friends Bruce and Margaret Bennett and Peter and Kay Willcox. (Longtime readers may recall that Bruce was my hiking buddy on coast-to-coast … Continue reading

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Field notes from Madroño Ranch: bison and birds

This is a bird-and-bison-intensive kitchen sink of a blog post; even Martin’s most focused editorial ministrations will be of no avail in trying to flush out some kind of narrative thread. To lend it at least an illusion of coherence, … Continue reading

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Gratuitous beauty

Our friend John Burnett recently returned from a trip to Japan, one of a handful of places he’d never been in a long career as a reporter for NPR. As a specialist in the American Southwest and Latin America, he … Continue reading

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South Texas: a fierce and unexpected beauty

Yum! This week has afforded me yet another in a long—seemingly infinite, in fact—series of opportunities to eat crow. Heather and I returned yesterday from a visit to our friends Hugh and Sarah Fitzsimons’ Shape Ranch, outside Carrizo Springs. As … Continue reading

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Home with the armadillo: a love letter to Texas

Recently we and our three kids went to Martin’s native San Francisco to help celebrate his father’s eighty-fifth birthday. The five of us spent an afternoon walking along the cliffs of Point Reyes National Seashore, where the ground was springy, … Continue reading

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