Once a year around this time, piping plovers--an endangered species--arrive on the beach of Orleans, making nests and laying their eggs. And they drive early tourists to Cape Cod crazy.
For the entire incubation period, which lasts about a month, off-road vehicles--for which folks have paid pricey access permit fees--are prohibited from the southern end of Nauset Beach, lest they disturb the eggs. When the eggs finally hatch, the beach is re-opened to vehicular traffic.
Several years ago, when I was still living in Texas, the owner of my current LNS called to ask if I could paint a custom piece. His customer wanted a piping plover doorstop--not the traditional brick, but a round piece which she planned to finish filled with sand. Easier on the toes, he explained. Here's the result. And here's to the piping plover, which arrived here two days ago--may it be fruitful and multiply!