Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Raven Haven

 It is day 6 of the 30 minus 2 days of writing hosted by Nicky and Mike of We Work For Cheese.  This is written for the prompt "Haven".  For more great stories, check out the list on Nicky's post.

Big Pinnacle in Pilot Mountain State Park in North Carolina is the nesting site of the Common Raven.  They are on a watch list which means they are considered rare but not in danger from a conservation standpoint.  On a walk around the base of the pinnacle, they can be seen soaring high above the trees.  Even though they are part of the crow family, they soar and perform aerial acrobatics like the hawks.

The Big Pinnacle has been closed to the public since the late 70s.  The old staircase by which one reached the summit finally fell apart and was removed.  

I remember climbing that staircase.  It was back in the 60s and I think I was about 5 years old.  It's not something I would do now, but I'm glad to have had the experience - even if my memories are vague.

Not only is Big Pinnacle a haven for rare birds such as the Raven, as well as Falcons, Woodpeckers and Turkey Vultures, it's 4 acres contain rare ecological features not normally found in this area.  Among these is a rare oak called the Bear Oak, which is on the Threatened list and found in only four locations in the state.  For these reasons, the Big Pinnacle will remain closed in order to preserve our treasures.


Some Raven facts:
  • Ravens are the largest bird in the crow family.
  • They weigh around 3 pounds.
  • They have a wing span of over 3 feet.
  • They are intelligent, with the ability to learn a series of tasks to reach a goal.
  • The Raven's call can express a wide range of emotions.
  • They live from the desert to the coniferous forest to coastal cliffs.
For more information on Pilot Mountain and the Big Pinnacle read here

Speaking of Ravens, congratulations to the Baltimore Ravens on winning the Super Bowl.

22 comments:

  1. Hey Linda, I adore ravens, and yes, they are BIG! You see them very rarely here, but it's always a shock/surprise! Indigo

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  2. So you're saying people can't get up close to these birds anymore. Quoth the raven: never more, eh? (You know, I was with you right up until you pulled for the wrong team in the Super Bowl.)

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  3. Very cool place! Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Hi Linda .. so much better that's it's a wildlife reserve - how wonderful .. we have Ravens at the Tower of London .. but the crow family are large birds ...

    So pleased you have the memory of climbing the staircase ...

    Cheers Hilary

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  5. Indigo- I'm a nature lover too, and I'm glad they are protected there.

    nonamedufus- That's right! Preservation of birds, plant life, and other rare ecological treasures. As for the Super Bowl, I'm not really into football, but it fit well with my topic.

    laughingmom- It is a great place for a hike. It's not too strenuous but it's not just a stroll either.

    Hilary- Yeah, they get the pinnacle and we get the rest of the park. Looking back, I can't really believe we climbed that staircase. At that age, though, there was little fear, and I was bracketed between adults.

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  6. I love ravens and crows and I'm glad they have a haven in your neck of the woods. It sounds like quite an interesting spot.

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  7. What a lovely memory to have. It sounds like a magical place. :)

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  8. What a nice memory for you especially since the staircase is no longer available to climb.

    Here in Kansas, we see the Common Raven fairly often but I know little about the species. Now I know more than I did.

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  9. Birds are gorgeous but they scare me to death. We have a big old oak tree in our yard and there are about 500 black crows in that tree at any given time. I won't go outside if I see them.

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  10. Hilary- It is a nice place, especially if you can get there when there aren't a lot of people walking the trail.

    Ziva- Yes it is - on both accounts.

    Cheryl- When you stand on the trail and look up, it is impressive. I wouldn't do it today. Not afraid of heights - just falling.

    Linda- So good to see you back in my little part of the world. Sorry the birds frighten you. I'd love to have a big old Oak in my yard, full or birds or not. I love the Live Oaks of the more Southern state. Not sure if we have any in NC.

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  11. It's wonderful you were able to experience that beautiful place before they closed it down!

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  12. I never knew ravens were rare. They're all over the place where I live. I marvel at their ability to alight on the tip top branch of a Spruce tree without collapsing it. Really an interesting use of the prompt. I'm so glad such places are closed off the the public. We'd just ruined them.

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  13. So Big Pinnacle is the haven for ravens? Sweet.

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  14. I know we've done the birds peck your eyes out joke to death BUT! Ravens and vultures? They really WILL peck your eyes out! :-)

    That looks like a beautiful place, Linda. Perfect choice for today's theme.

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  15. I LOVE this! Makes me want to go. And what a great take on the subject today!

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  16. Ravens are three pounds? Are they tasty? You forgot to mention if they are tasty. I'm figuring they taste like chicken.

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  17. Who knew that competing in 30-2 Days of Writing could be so educational?

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  18. I was digging the conservation stuff, and the facts about ravens, but the mention of the Baltimore Ravens was a kick in the gut! Being a native of the California Bay Area, I got swept up in 49er fever during this most recent Super Bowl. Now the thought of ravens makes me a little sad.

    I still support the protection of their nesting sites, though.

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  19. I didn't know all that about Ravens. I don't think we have them here. We have crows, but I don't think we have ravens. I'll check it out.

    It's wonderful there's a haven for these birds and plants and that these special species are being preserved.

    That was an interesting Super Bowl...the one the lights went out. I don't think that game will be forgotten anytime soon.

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  20. Meleah- Yeah, but it's best for the safety of the bird, trees and animals, not to mention the humans.

    Jayne- I know they are rare here. That may not be true for everywhere.

    P.J. - I couldn't resist the rhyme either.

    Nicky- Yeah, but only if your dead, then you wouldn't know about it.

    Katherine- Thanks! It's only about 45 minutes away, and I only get there every few years or so.

    Mariann Simms- I don't know, I've never seen them on the menu. Something about being protected I guess.

    Malisa- Not all of us are funny so we work with what we've got. ;)

    KZ- Thanks for your support. Sorry about the Super Bowl reference. We are really not into football, but have friends who are Ravens fans. Besides it fit in with my topic.

    Sara- Like Malisa said, the writing challenge can be educational, too. I'm not a football fan, but I did watch the last 6 minutes so I'd at least know who won.

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  21. I wonder if I have ever seen a Raven? I imagine that they are big black birds though. And to see free big birds soar across the sky is an amazing sight indeed! Beautiful!

    Thanks for sharing all these facts about Ravens. Very interesting indeed.

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  22. You're fortunate to have gotten a chance to enter that haven when you were young. And the ravens are fortunate to have the haven all to themselves now.

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