So I says to the wife.."Come on Hon, let's take a ride over to Park Station. Maybe we'll see something we haven't seen in a while". I'm thinking maybe Ducks, Geese, or other Waterfowl that frequent this small lake in the spring and summer months. After an hour or so of driving around and seeing only a pair of Mallards, we headed back home.
In the 80's I was a Deputy Wildlife Conservation Officer with the Pa. Game Commission in the Northwest District of the state (Erie County). As such, I had seasonal duties that at times required for the release of "farm" raised Ring-neck Pheasants. I'd come home from my day job and there would be anywhere from a dozen to 20 or so crates of Pheasants stacked in my driveway. I think their were 10 or 12 Pheasants in each crate with male and female birds. I'd load them in the back of the truck and grab 1 or 2 or 3 of my sons and head out to a couple of game lands and release them. This usually happened close to the opening of ring-neck season. Now having about a dozen ring-necks in a closed confined crate for any length of time, results in an aroma that is really tough to take. Reaching into the crate and carefully getting a hold of individual birds was also pretty messy. (Reason for grabbing 1, 2, or 3 sons).Oh the memories...My boys would return home really disgustingly stinky, dirty, etc. Mom wasn't proud..but I was. Go figure.
With all that said, I moved away from Northwestern Pa, resigned my commission, and transferred to North Central Pa. with my day job in early 1988. I have not seen or heard a Ring-neck Pheasant since. Until I pulled down the driveway from my aforementioned trip to Park Station. There he was...dusting himself in the gravel. My wife had never seen one, so while she was getting her eyes full, I got out and filled my camera lens with pheasant. I only took, over the next 3 hours, about 150 pictures. Gotta love digital cameras. This ring-neck has taken up residency in my front yard it seems as I awoke this morning to the, not heard recently, but very familiar sound of the Ring-neck Pheasant call. It's all good.
I so love wildlife....and the memories of days gone by.