Growing up I was intrigued by the Where’s Waldo series. The objective was to find a funny looking guy in a maze of brightly coloured stuff.
My first encounter with a pica was exactly the same. We were walking along a mountain path and heard a squeak. Turning around we saw a large pile of rocks with a million places to hide but no animal.
The squeaks kept coming until finally we saw a pica dart between rocks. We had to be quick. Once we focused on the pica it seemed reasonably obvious but turn away for a second and it was very hard to find again.
Years later, I knew where the pica types hung out. I sat down with my camera and waited. Sure enough a squeak and some motion and I was in business. The longer I sat there, the more predictable the pica became. It would grab some grass, run up to a rock to look over at me (posing really), then disappear behind a nearby rock. It would then reverse the process.
Eventually even I can see a pattern developing and focused on the posing rock. That was a fun afternoon.