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23 hours ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

We have all of those except bears (which have been gone from Indiana for well over a hundred years).

😞 Poor bears.

People are rather silly about the bears around here. I say if you choose to live in the woods, you should respect the creatures that were there before you, but no, seems like half the folks want the poor things killed lest they get in the trash. Sigh.

I assume we have owls too, but I've never seen one, and it's been a lonnnnng time since I heard one. Still hear turkeys, though!

Foxes will get cats, I've been told. 😞 Such pretty creatures, foxes. Sneaky, too.

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4 hours ago, Arcadia said:

I assume we have owls too, but I've never seen one, and it's been a lonnnnng time since I heard one. Still hear turkeys, though!

I know there are wild turkeys around here, and I seem to recall seeing one a few years ago.  But when I hear something that sounds like a distant flock of turkeys, it's actually sandhill cranes migrating, way up high.

Owls are nocturnal, of course, so it's rare to see one.  I've seen I think four in my lifetime.  If you want to hear them, it's helpful to be outdoors at night, or at least have your windows open.

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When you're up daily at stupid o'clock dog walking, you hear owls!

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Used to see owls up in Maine, but never heard them. Here, used to hear them but never seen them. I think they're messing with me.

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There are different species of owls -- not only different ones in different places, but also several kinds in the same place.  They all look basically the same (bigger, smaller, "ear" tufts, no tufts, etc.), but their calls vary.  The weirdest one I've heard is the mating ritual of the barred owl -- sounds like a movie lunatic laughing, only more so.  Scared the *&^%@ out of me first time I heard it!  (And of course I was alone in the woods at dusk.)

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I only know it's tawny owls I hear, beacuse of hearing them on Hounds of Baskerville!

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There are lots of wild turkeys around here.  I never saw them as a kid but I think they’ve been making a comeback.

There’s an owl that sits in a tree just outside my house and hoots every night.  I don’t even need my windows open, I can hear it clear through the wall.  I’ve never seen it though.  In fact, I’m not entirely certain I’ve ever seen an owl.

9 hours ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

The weirdest one I've heard is the mating ritual of the barred owl -- sounds like a movie lunatic laughing, only more so.  Scared the *&^%@ out of me first time I heard it!  (And of course I was alone in the woods at dusk.)

Loons can sound a bit like that too.  They make some crazy noises (hence the name, I suppose?).  It can be quite eerie, though I actually really like the sound.  The first time I heard one I thought it was howling wolves (but I was little).

5 hours ago, besleybean said:

I only know it's tawny owls I hear, beacuse of hearing them on Hounds of Baskerville!

Is that the bird that sounds like it screams?  There’s some bird that I hear in every British show that has any scene outdoors at night.  I’ve been trying to figure out what it is for years, lol.  I’ve tried getting help from the captions, but it’s rarely described, and when it is, I’ve seen it attributed to at least 5 different birds and animals.  It has a call that sounds like a single scream.  “AH!!”

 

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Loons.  (Example of the howling sound starts at 2 minutes 45 seconds.)

 

 

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I remember seeing them on a TV wildlife show at primary school...always loved those birds.

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8 hours??? Of loons?

There's a pun in there somewhere. This would be a good time for VBS to show up. :D 

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1 hour ago, Arcadia said:

This would be a good time for VBS to show up.

I was thinking the same thing just a little while ago.

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Van Buren Supernova (or Vacation Bible School, if you prefer).

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Oh dear, best of luck. :thumbsup: There are several confirmed cases in Vienna as well by now, but since we're a big city (by Austrian standards, anyway :lol: ) that was to be expected.

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Yeow. 

I was speaking with a friend of mine yesterday, a former nurse, and she is of the opinion that the threat from this virus is rather overblown, that it's no more dangerous than any other flu; just newer. She was listening to a doctor who's an expert in these things, she says. Sooooo …. let's hope they're both right. Meanwhile … run for the hills! Or … maybe just take sensible precautions and hope for the best. Be safe, everyone.

 

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I thing the problem with it is not the severity or mortality, but that it's so infectious. And even if it's not life threatening to the most people, if there are too many people just sick and infectious, it becomes a problem of logistics, availability of hospitals and medication - and in the end a threat to the economy. Right now there are problems around the world, because the shipping of parts made in China are delayed and it disturbs production of cars, machines and such.
Which clearly show the risks of globalization, both to our health and our economies.

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4 hours ago, J.P. said:

the risks of globalization, both to our health and our economies

I'm all for globalization in general, but there definitely are risks.  I'm particularly nervous that China is now producing a significant percentage of the world's steel.  Admittedly, the US had dropped that ball LONG before China picked it up, so there was a market niche available.

5 hours ago, Arcadia said:

a friend of mine, a former nurse [...] is of the opinion that the threat from this virus is rather overblown, that it's no more dangerous than any other flu; just newer. She was listening to a doctor who's an expert in these things, she says. Sooooo …. let's hope they're both right. Meanwhile [...] maybe just take sensible precautions.

I'm inclined to agree.  I remember the huge concern over swine flu back in the late 70's, and that turned out to be basically just another strain of the flu.  But even an epidemic of the common cold can wreak havoc with schools and businesses.

Alex and I have found that we get *far* fewer illnesses since we started being more careful.  When we're out and about, we make a point of washing our hands before eating.  We avoid eating things like supermarket samples ('cause God knows who else has had their paws in there) or finger food at parties (same reason).  We stopped drinking from water fountains after seeing people sucking water from them.  Alex even stopped filling his mug from the office water dispenser after seeing other people refilling their water bottles with the neck of the bottle touching the spout.  Call us paranoid, but we hardly ever get colds any more, just one every few years.

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I think the best thing you can do is stay away from school kids. I almost never encounter them, and I'm almost never sick. My nephew and his wife, on the other hand, seem to be sick all the time, along with their two boys. And I remember my nephew being sick all the time when he was a kid, and so were his parents. Little germ factories, kids. :D 

 

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12 minutes ago, Artemis said:

Good lord, no. Sounds stultifying. But I'm allergic to routine.

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2 hours ago, Arcadia said:

I think the best thing you can do is stay away from school kids.

Oh good heavens, yes!  When I was teaching school, I was forever catching some illness or other.

2 hours ago, Artemis said:

I have two immediate reactions:  1) This reminds me a great deal of JRR Tolkien's description of the Shire calendar (see Appendix D).  2) My birthday would be on a Thursday and Alex's would be on a Wednesday.  Every single year.  Never on a weekend.  Bleh.

No, wait, I forgot one:  3) One extra day every four years is easy enough to deal with, but a whole week almost as often?  Sounds like it would throw everything off, especially once people were accustomed to the new boring calendar.  There would be a lot more leap babies (simply because there would be a lot more "leap days").   And it apparently would not occur on a regular schedule, which would cause confusion even after people got used to the rest of the new calendar.

My bottom line:  I don't think the current calendar is enough of a problem to warrant throwing it out and getting used to something else.

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If it was up to me, we would have a whole different calendar!

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14 hours ago, besleybean said:

If it was up to me, we would have a whole different calendar!

Please tell us about it!

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