Naturespeak A naturalist's view of the world

September 21, 2016

A Magnificent Specimen

Filed under: Uncategorized — wykes @ 8:12 pm

A Magnificent Pea Fowl Poo photo IMG_4342_zpswc0rlglf.jpg

On a recent trip to a country dairy farm with my grandson my eye was captured by a piece of natural art. It was an exceptionally well-formed bird dropping perched atop a fence post.  In an attempt to keep my young charge focused on the animals I did not direct his attention to the miniature piece of crowning perfection before me.  I wanted his “s” and “p”memory words, the ones he would proudly report to his mother,  to be standards such as sheep and peacock and not their fecal equivalents.  As an adult, I could not deny the thing before me so I present this feature to you for a totally non-scientific review. As surely as art can be nothing but poo, poo can sometimes be art.

Farms, by their very nature, are places of perpetual poo. The stuff was everywhere – mostly distributed unevenly across the ground or rolling about like marbles. As much as I tried to ignore this category of sightings on our farm visit, this specimen was highlighted by the low afternoon light and demanded attention.. The separation of the white from the solid material (the pee from the poo as it were) indicates that this was a bird dropping. But dropping is hardly the word to describe this product. It wasn’t dropped, it was placed and delivered like a whipped topping on a pumpkin pie. An extended point at the apex accentuated the form and elevated it to a work of near beauty. It transcended feces and appeared like a sculpture of a pensive snow white snail crawling about with a granular swirling shell upon its back.

The artist was undoubtedly a large bird. No House Sparrow or Pigeon could have survived such an act.  None of the chickens are capable of reaching such a high perch either, so it must have been “expressed” by one of the proud Peacocks or Peahens that roam about the place. One knows now why the Peafowl crows! Theirs is a world of feathered beauty but in the end it is also a world of earthy charms little respected by the world in general. Pea Fowl are Poo Fowl as well. I appreciate what you have done and some day so too will my grandson.


  1. Such a funny post. I miss your regular posts and check back now and then to see if you’ve posted anything new. I always chuckle at this ode to poop, and move on. It finally occurred to me that it would be a smart thing to let you know that someone is watching your terrific posts and miss you when we don’t hear from you. Thanks for all the good humored, nature-centric posts in the past. I don’t often comment, but should. Happy almost holiday season to you.

    Comment by Karren Coplen — November 22, 2016 @ 1:04 pm

  2. I’m so glad you’re posting again/still. I found your site a few years ago and started popping by and catching up on the old articles. I love your humor and perspective.
    I hope you have a lovely day!

    Comment by Rebecca — December 26, 2016 @ 4:17 pm

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    Comment by Micheal Christion — December 18, 2017 @ 7:13 am

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