What a beautiful Groundhog’s Day—or the Feast of the Blessed Rodent if you are on the Liturgical Calendar. I’m sure that most groundhogs, had they bothered to pop their heads out from their cozy underground homes Sunday, surely would have not seen their shadows.I looked for mine, but did not see him. I assume we only have one, though I suppose we could have an entire grunt of groundhogs (or whatever the proper collective term might be), and I had only seen them one at a time. None of our usual feral friends was around Sunday. I think the horses were making too much of a ruckus as they were also out enjoying the day.
The boy and I were out herding chickens and placing them in their enclosed run. They need to be in a protected place as there are varmints lingering around who, at this time of year, are willing to take down even a large bird. “It must be hard being a chicken,” the boy said, “as so many things are said to taste like you.”
The horses had made a mess of their trough. Though lacking opposable thumbs, they still managed to fill the thing with weeds and clods until it looked like a forgotten school science project. But there is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man, so I emptied out the trough and got a scrub brush and went to work and wondered what spring would bring.
There will be a walk and bird count next Saturday, February 15, starting at 9 a.m. at the William Floyd Estate in Mastic Beach. This walk will be lead by MaryLaura Lamont, in cooperation with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society’s Great Backyard Bird Count.
The group will record every bird seen. The more bird lovers on the walk, the more everyone can help each other stay warm! For more information, please call Ms. Lamont at (631) 399-2030.
Cooking classes are being offered at The Inn Spot on the Bay in Hampton Bays, near the foot of the Ponquogue Bridge. Chef Colette will be giving classes that include demonstrations, discussions and tastings. The classes will be taking place on Thursday nights, starting at 6:30 p.m., and cost $45 per class (a discount package is available). For information and registration, please call (631) 728-1200 or visit www.theinnspot.com.
Enjoy a romantic Valentine’s Day Full Moon Night Hike at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge on Friday, February 14, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The walk will last about 90 minutes. There is no charge for refuge members; non-members must pay $5. Call (631) 653-4771 for reservations.
The Westhampton Free Library will have a special guest this Thursday, February 6, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Rosie, a therapy dog, is making a visit and she loves to hear children read stories. Children who have difficulty reading aloud can benefit from this special event.
Registration is required, so please call the library to sign up for a 15-minute spot. Call (631) 288-3335, ext. 112, to reserve a place.
Winter Wildlife Camp over at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge will run from Tuesday, February 18, through Friday, February 21, from 9 a.m. to noon each day. Campers between the ages of 5 and 11 will enjoy crafts and a daily hike. Cost is $40 per day, or $100 for all four days. Preregistration is required; please call (631) 653-4771 to reserve a spot.