This afternoon we visited the mall in a neighboring town. One of my favorite things about summer happens in this parking lot - there are large black birds (perhaps grackles) that hang out in the parking lot, eating bugs off of car bumpers. I get quite a kick out of how they've adapted to their environment.
I have also been watching the roadrunners in our front yard this week. They've discovered the fallen mimosa tree. Usually we have one roadrunner in the driveway at some point during the day. Two days ago there were three large birds running up and down the fallen tree trunk and branches, looking for bugs. Yesterday they were climbing all over the stack of cut wood and the big pile of leafy branches that we will eventually burn.
Down in the hayfield, along the north edge, is a huge old sycamore tree that has died slowly during the five years we've been here. It is completely dead now; its large branches fall to the ground during windstorms. I've counted no less than seven woodpecker holes in one trunk, and have watched the pileated woodpeckers hang on to the side of the tree and peck for bugs.