"A Sand County Almanac"

"THERE ARE SOME WHO CAN LIVE WITHOUT WILD THINGS AND SOME WHO CANNOT."
"FOR US IN THE MINORITY THE OPPORTUNITY TO SEE GEESE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN TELEVISION.".....Aldo Leopold




"LOOK DEEP INTO NATURE, AND THEN YOU WILL UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING BETTER".....Albert Einstein


Sunday, June 16, 2019

BIRDS OF THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS


Many of the birds in the Rocky Mountains are the same ones that we see on the East coast, but some are only similar like the mountain bluebird.  This lovely creature is shown here beating the crap out of a caterpillar...





We have common ravens in the East, but these have learned a behavior in the national parks that I have not seen before.  At nearly every parking lot or turn-out there is at least one raven hopping from car to car  hoping for a handout...



American white pelicans breed in the Yellowstone Eco-system each year...







Yellow-rumped warblers are very common...





This red-tailed hawk was found in the Gros Ventre River area of Jackson Hole, WY...



We saw this osprey in the Buffalo Valley, also in Jackson Hole...



We came across one of my favorite game birds at the Wilderness Road trailhead.  The ruffed grouse...







The mountain chickadee is similar to their Eastern cousins...





This wilson's snipe was on Flagstaff Road...



As was this dusky grouse...





Tree swallows are plentiful here, as are mosquitos, one of their their favorite foods...



This spotted towhee was a "first" for me...



Broad-winged hawks are shown as migrants in the Rockies...



Clark's nutcrackers frequently are present at picnic tables in the parks...



We often see yellow warblers in the willow bushes near ponds and streams...



These steller's jays were in the Bridger-Teton wilderness...





This cassin's finch was near the road to Spaulding Bay in Grand Teton National Park...



It was fun to watch this red-breasted nuthatch excavate a nesting hole along the road to Dead Man's Canyon trailhead...





Sandhill cranes are another species that often nest in the Yellowstone area...





Probably the most colorful bird that we see in the West is the western tanager.  This photo shows a male near two fledging starlings...



A female western tanager waits...



As the male postures and sings to impress her...






Thanks for visiting, be well, and come back soon.




Saturday, June 15, 2019

YELLOWSTONE WOLF ENCOUNTERS


Many apologies for the delay in adding updates to this blog.  Internet is very limited here, so please bear with me.
We have had three wolf encounters since arriving in Yellowstone.  The first, and most satisfying, was when we spotted the alpha female of the Wapiti Lake Pack.  How do we know that she is the alpha female?  Because she is nursing, only the alpha's in each pack mate...


Like all mammals that brave the cold winters here, she grew a heavy winter coat which she is now shedding...


Many wolf lovers are looking forward to the day when she brings her new pups into view.

Our next encounter was while driving up the Lamar Valley, also known as the "Valley of Wolves".  This yearling female was moving quickly and when I got her in the viewfinder she was answering nature's call while holding tightly to the leg of her most recent kill...


When she finished doing her business she continued on her way...


We last saw her as she disappeared behind a distant hill...


Our third encounter was with a pack of five wolves.  Unfortunately, the distance was too great for usable images.

Thanks for visiting, be well, and come back soon.



Sunday, June 2, 2019

GRIZZLY 863 and the LONE CUB



We had an opportunity to photograph Grizzly 863, aka Felicia, after she had reunited with her surviving cub…



It was heartwarming to see the bond between Felicia and her cub…





The cub appeared to be a typical, energetic youngster…




Felicia seems determined to teach him many life lessons early in his life.  Like how to avoid stepping in “stuff”…


How to navigate obstacles…


How to climb seemingly insurmountable obstacles…





After reaching the top of the hill…



She led him to a fast flowing stream for a lesson in swift water crossing…







If this cub survives to be an adult, he will no doubt be prepared for whatever his future holds…


Thanks for visiting, be well, and come back soon.