Ground-Nesters

Spotted Towhee nest on ground

Plenty of rufous-sided towhees have nested on our land over the years, but this spotted towhee was a new species for me. When she scratched for seeds in the flowerbed outside my study window, I pointed her out to Blake.

“Come with me,” he said. He led me to the south edge of our woods and showed me this nest.

“When I came through with the dogs, I saw her fly off. Four eggs.”

We ran the dogs on a northerly route for the next few weeks. Grazed our cows elsewhere.

But still. We can’t guard every ground-nester. Can’t keep all those hooves and teeth and talons and rain away from those delicate homes, those fragile babies growing right out there under the open sky.  How does any brood survive?

Must be more to it.

Spotted towhee nest nestled amidst grass and leaves

“You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.”

—Psalm 32:7

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Love the outdoors? I can take you there. Short, true, beautiful posts from a PNW naturalist, faith writer and award-winning author.

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