GETTING IN TOUCH WITH NATURE: Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves
of strength that will endure as long as life lasts." ~ Rachel Carson
It's that time of year for these little ones (chipmunks) where they are busy making sure to have a huge winter stash. Rather than hibernating clear through winter, they will sleep a few days at a time and wake to raise their body temperature and then they turn to their summer/fall savings rather than fat reserves to get through the long, snowy, cold months ahead.
I spent an hour with this bull moose today. What was extraordinary (beyond the hour long visit) was watching him wallow. This happens during the mating season, usually by the dominant bull of the area. I watched him paw and scrape the ground and then he marked it over and over. I have video of this too. I didn't see him lie down, which is something they will do to get the scent on their body. He wallowed in two locations. If one was a good wallow, he will likely visit it frequently during the breeding season to see if the pit has attracted any cow moose. If a cow finds one of these moose wallows she will stay in the vicinity and await the bull. What's cool is both wallows are right near my cabin! Moose wallows are randomly placed and are seldom in the same location year over year.
I have some video of him going up the road to the meadow. I photographed him all along the walk to where he made two wallows. He got to meet my dog after about 45 minutes. All was calm with both of them.
If you pay close attention to wildlife siblings, you'll often notice how different each one reacts to unfamiliar experiences, especially potential danger. In the photo shoot below, I've posted the pics in the order they were taken. The fawn on the right in the first photo will be the one who makes his way to mom. The one on the left will remain curious and assesses me long after her sibling has left.
I was told by a farmer who raised goats, that the bonding each new life makes with their mother dictates this behavior. The fawn on the left is more independent (likely didn't have a strong bond) and will exhibit this bolder behavior on subsequent encounters. The one on the right will be seen nearer his mother for comfort more often than not.
After the sibling has made his way to mom, this little one is still 'eyes on me' trying to figure things out.
I have seen this pattern over and over.
Even when this one begins to move toward mom and sibling, she is still willing to find something to eat and was willing to explore around her before joining them.
It is extraordinary to see Blue Herons this high (10,000 feet/3048 m)
in the Colorado mountains. I've seen this pair twice in two days. I've
only seen these birds up in this area a few times in my life.
From my office window, I photographed this bull after some head butting with another bull. I was on a business call at the time, so didn't pull my camera out until this bull began kicking up dust. This was after seeing a mommy moose and her baby and two blue herons. Perfect way to start my day.
I saw this moose last night after my deer family shoot, but it was too dark for photographs. I went looking for her this evening and found her again! She was calm and eating in between looking up to see me. I whistled to get her attention. She was completely content with me being there. I left before she did. This is about a half mile from where I'm staying.