March 17, 1860. P.M.
To Walden and Goose Pond. I see a large flock of sheldrakes, which have probably risen from the pond, go over my head in the woods, a dozen large and compact birds flying with great force and rapidity, spying out the land, eying every traveler. Now you hear the whistling of their wings, and in a moment they are lost in the horizon. What health and vigor they suggest! The life of man seems slow and puny in comparison, reptilian. How handsome a flock of red-wings, ever changing its oval form as it advances, from the rear birds pursuing the others.