Northern Flicker (Male), Cabin Lake Viewing Blinds, Deschutes National Forest, Near Fort Rock, Oregon. (Elaine R. Wilson / Contributed)

Where the wild things are | Hansville Happenings

I was warned. When I moved here, my neighbors said to be sure my cat and dog were safely indoors before dusk because, if a coyote didn’t get them, an eagle would.

I’d never had to worry about predatory wildlife before, so I was slightly appalled.

Seems to me, coyotes have been spotted more often of late. And not a month goes by when someone doesn’t put out a desperate call for help finding a runaway pet. Not a good combination.

Who’s top dog? Coyotes are probably going to win when attacking your pet. A fence would help, but few of us in Hansville have fenced yards. Collars and tags fall off too easily in a struggle.

The experts at PAWS recommend spaying or neutering because males and females are less likely to bolt if fixed. They also strongly suggest microchipping. It’s painless, lasts a lifetime and costs about $40 at a vet, less at a humane society.

Finally, take a clear photo of Fido, showing any distinguishing feature, so you can quickly make a flier or post it online.

What’s in your backyard? Twittering wild birds, for sure. But by the time you flip through your handy bird guide trying to identify a particularly intriguing one hanging out at your feeder, it’s flown, or you’ve already forgotten exactly what it looked like.

Here’s help: Gene Bullock of the Kitsap Audubon Society will be giving two talks at the Greater Hansville Community Center this month. With his tips and tricks, you’ll learn how to spot and name birds quickly. Color and shape, what they’re eating and where and how they sound are clues. Plus, there are plenty of easy-to-use guides, online and off and free field trips to help you hone your skills.

Come to “Talking About … Backyard Birdwatching” 7-8 p.m. March 21 at the GHCC.

And at the center’s Neighbor’s Lunch, noon to 1 p.m. March 15, Bullock will be discussing the beautiful birds you might spot on our 60.8 acres of wetland and shoreline at Point No Point Park.

Trilliums in bloom, tra la! I’ve been assured by Art Ellison and others who keep the Hansville Greenway going that trilliums will be up-and-coming through April. It’s worth a hike to see these gorgeous native wild flowers sparkling on the forest floor. With three leaves, three sepals and three white petals — trilliums are also called the “trinity flower” — they’re one of the first heralds of spring.

Spring? Thank goodness.

Scholarship alert … Applications for the GHCC annual scholarships must be postmarked by April 30. They’re open to high school seniors entering college or an accredited training program, as well as current college undergraduates living in the Greater Hansville area. Go to www.hansville.org.

— Annette Wright was an editor and writer for women’s magazines in New York City for 25 years. Contact her at wright annette511@gmail.com.

(Art Ellison / Contributed)