20 October 2022 – Today I learned:

That Merlin (the Cornell Bird ID app) thinks a child’s squeal of excitement while playing is a wild turkey.

I had been half-listening to neighbour kids playing, shrieking and screaming and having fun, several houses away for five or ten minutes as I walked around my yard, and I heard what was clearly, to me, another squeal of kid excitement just as “Wild Turkey” popped up on the screen. Still, thinking Merlin usually knows what it’s talking about, I looked all around, even in the air. No wild turkey. Sort of smug about my ID skills beating Merlin this time and also slightly less confident of Merlin’s prowess.

And 1% of me thinks there was some rogue wild turkey calling just as the child squealed and Merlin distinguished it and I didn’t. Another .5% really hopes I didn’t just ignore the celebratory call of a murderous wild turkey menacing small children who were screaming in terror.

Featured image: sometimes we do have wild turkeys, though I haven’t seen any in our yard since winter

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