Category Archives: animals

New Cat

In the  spring I lost my faith­ful min­ion Trip. Ear­ly this sum­mer we added Peach to our menagerie.

Peach — typ­i­cal goofy expression

As much as I love the big orange doo­fus, he’s just not min­ion mate­r­i­al. (Also, he prefers Jim’s com­pa­ny to mine. Curr.)

So… to rec­ti­fy the lack of a min­ion for the Mag­pie Cen­ter for World Dom­i­na­tion. We have added a sec­ond cat.

Meet Diesel. Most often known as Izzy.

Diesel — pon­der­ing the great outdoors

Peach and izzy­have learned to get along, sort of. There’s a lot of chas­ing and steal­ing the best sleep­ing spots going on. Until they’re both tired, then they set­tle down togeth­er on the back of the couch.

stop fol­low­ing me already

The Things You See in the Woods

For Christ­mas this year we got our­selves a cou­ple of game cama­ras so that we could get a bet­ter look at the ani­mals ( includ­ing neigh­bors) who are using the net­work of trails that goes through our woods. (Peo­ple out here in the West usu­al­ly call what we’ve got for­est. But I’m old school and from the East, where the 20 acres that we’ve got would be called a Woods. So Woods it is for me.)

The cam­eras are a pair of Brown­ing Strike Force (BTC-5). We got a two pack on sale. They take day­light col­or pho­tos and night­time infra-red. They can also shoot video but we haven’t exper­i­ment­ed with that yet.

Each pho­to comes with a bunch of data at the bot­tom. Tem­per­a­ture, moon­phase (use­ful at night) date and time, as well as a set­table cam­era name. We have one that’s unnamed and one that’s named BDF TWO.

Pret­ty typ­i­cal in the day­time pho­tos are the deer. This was tak­en at the inter­sec­tion of the two main paths to the imme­di­ate south of the log­ging road.

This spot at is at the intersection of two main paths.

Typ­i­cal Deer Shot

We also get oth­er people’s dogs. Any­one know this fellow?

run, run, they're coming

Run­ning Dog

The night pic­tures can be pret­ty —  shots of the deer brows­ing or trav­el­ing to sleep­ing spots. I’m think­ing that the next time we move the cam­eras I’ll try to find a fre­quent­ly used sleep­ing spot for one of them.

This spot is off of the path back to the garage. It’s at the junc­tion of two deer trails that can’t eas­i­ly be walked by humans.

Maybe she stepped on a slug?

Tiny Steps

Who's there?

Look­ing Up

A few min­utes lat­er anoth­er deer comes by.

Yummy fern shoots

Night Brows­er

Late in April we had a new night visitor.

It’s the first sight­ing of the bob­cat that we thought might be hang­ing around. (Look at the low­er cen­ter of the frame.)

well hello kitty.

Bob­cat!

Note the short tail with the dark tip.

padding along in the night

Cat Butt

bye!

Part­ing Shot

We’ve had no sign of the bear that was here last win­ter. Maybe he and the bob­cat aren’t amenable to shar­ing turf?

Well, we did find this Bear.

Jim on a trials bike.

The Papa Bear Out Riding

And here Jim is walk­ing the dog in the morn­ing before it’s light enough for the cam­era to switch to day­time. (Yeah, it says 8:45 but I think the cam­era missed day­light sav­ings time — besides it stays dark in the woods.)

hurry up Dad

Are You Coming?

For some rea­son (cam­era tim­ing?) we get lots of butts.

tails up!

Lots of These Butts.

Jim on the trials bike.

Moto Butt

The two most com­mon butts in the woods. Me and the Big G.

oof, not flattering.

Let’s Go!

 

In the Woods

We moved the game cam­eras to new loca­tions two week­ends ago.

This one we thought was a sleep­ing area.

1150:060515:59F:BDF ONE   :5

1150:060515:59F:BDF ONE :5

But a cou­ple of weeks of obser­va­tion reveals nothing.

The oth­er cam­era was placed at the south end of the sep­tic field. An open area sur­round­ed by for­est and home to at least one bun­ny colony. Which explains the pres­ence of this fellow.

1207:060415:54F:BDF TWO   :5

1207:060415:54F:BDF TWO :5

He gets a close up.

1207:060415:54F:BDF TWO   :5

1207:060415:54F:BDF TWO :5

We’ve also got the required butts. This one is espe­cial­ly graphic.

1905:061315:59F:BDF TWO   :7

1905:061315:59F:BDF TWO :7

And a nice shot of the neighbor’s dogs hav­ing a bit of a romp. Giv­en the time stamps I’d guess that they had pur­sued the deer from their own yard to our woods.

1911:061315:59F:BDF TWO   :7

1911:061315:59F:BDF TWO :7

Game Cameras in the Late Winter and Early Spring

It’s been a while since I’ve post­ed any of the game cam­era pic­tures. Even when we are ignor­ing them they sit in the woods and on the dri­ve­way and qui­et­ly go about their business.

Most­ly we get shots of deer. A few of which have iden­ti­fi­able traits. There’s Torn Ear.

wonder how it got that way

Torn Ear

and one that I call Short Neck.

plays football?

Short Neck

We see lots of butts.

the big predator goes for a stroll

Night Time Walk

going off road on the way home?

And the Big Bike

back to the short bus

Back of the Defender

We’ve seen a coy­ote a bunch of times. For a cou­ple of days at a time about every month. Both in the woods and on the dri­ve­way. Giz­mo tracks something/someone up the low­er pas­ture road most morn­ings. I think the coy­otes are around more often than they end up on camera.

going for a stroll

Coy­ote Walks Down the Driveway

And sur­prise! We spot­ted a pair.

are you coming with me or not?

Two! Coy­otes

We also get occa­sion­al sight­ings of Bob the Cat. Only in the sep­tic field nev­er on the dri­ve­way. I can’t fig­ure out how he’s get­ting onto and off of the sep­tic field.

looking for something

Bob the Cat

Occa­sion­al­ly the cam­eras get arty.

arty, no?

Game Cam­era Art

We’ve pulled that cam­eras in for down­load­ing and bat­tery replace­ments. They should go back out this week­end. We’re going to move the one from the sep­tic field to down at the oth­er end of the pas­ture near the manure pile. See who’s using that low­er pas­ture road. More pic­tures next month. (maybe)

More from the Game Cameras

June was a bad month for game cam­eras. One of the Brown­ings died — no idea why. And the replace­ment Bush­nells are tak­ing some time to get set up the way we want them. Still there were a cou­ple of inter­est­ing sight­ings and good pictures.

Things we see dur­ing the day:

two up on the huckleberry

two up on the way out

We’ve seen both the res­i­dent does —  skin­ny neck and ragged ear. There’s also a lit­tle buck­ling but he’s not show­ing up on the cam­eras yet.

skinny neck

skin­ny neck

ragged ear

ragged ear

There are two coyotes:
We’re still learn­ing to tell them apart. One has very dis­tinct col­oration on his face. The oth­er is not so dra­mat­i­cal­ly marked.

coyote #1

first there is this in the sep­tic field — blur­ry as heck

coyote number 2

30 sec­onds lat­er on the pas­ture road (the female?)

wiley

this is the male — I think.

Things we see at night:
The deer of course.

deer in the night

deer in the night

and our only shots of the coy­ote pair together.

two fer

coy­ote pair going up the driveway

scary eyes!

coy­ote pair com­ing back down the driveway

Equal­ly flashy but not so scary.

to up on the way back from Lyle Lovett

That’s some flash gear.

trash night in the sticks

not so wildlife

after concert stroll

an evening walk in the rain

Game Cameras November

Only a few pic­tures this month.

Of note, the bear that should be asleep this time of year was up and mov­ing around the prop­er­ty at the begin­ning of the month.

heading out for a very early breakfast

Out bear is still in town.

The bob cat also vis­it­ed. We have him (her?) going up and down the dri­ve way on Oct 31st and then in the sep­tic field on Nov 19th.

cat butt! better than deer butt.

Up the Driveway

more cat, no butt

and back down the driveway

blurry but he's there

head shot a cou­ple of weeks later.

The coy­otes have been back. We haven’t seen them in over a month. I thought they were hav­ing trou­ble shar­ing the range with the bobcat.

strolling

the coy­otes are back.

coyote, no roadrunner

anoth­er view

Bucky is look­ing good — quite sleek and fat.

psst, buddy wanna buy a watch.

nice lit­tle rack you got there

As are the does.

yum

hav­ing a bit of lunch on a rainy day.

 

And once in a while the cam­eras bring us just a lit­tle too much information.

hahahahaha

real­ly? close the door next time

 

Fooling Around with a New Camera

We’ve got a new cam­era on the farm and I’m work­ing out the kinks in my fin­gers — they still remem­ber the old cam­era… Today I took some pic­tures around the farm.

white sheep

Dot — the old­est of our sheep.

buff colored chicken

Yel­low Hen Has Scary Eyes

borwn alpaca head

Dorky Alpaca

Bouvier des Flandres head shot

The Big Dog Watch­ing Me

napping Bouvier des Flandres

The Big Dog More Relaxed

Wildlife on the Farm — April 2017

The first real month of spring — as evi­denced by the vis­i­tor in our first pic­ture. The robins are back and hop­ping around the pas­ture look­ing for worms. This fel­low was look­ing to land on the fence post that the cam­era is mount­ed on.

another bird landing on the camera!

well hel­lo there

And they coy­otes are show­ing them­selves reg­u­lar­ly both at night and dur­ing the day.

fat and sassy

Walk­ing up the road by the pasture.

coming and going

Coy­ote walk­ing up the dri­ve­way at night

glwoing evil eyes ;)

also in the sep­tic field

The deer are start­ing to look a bit bet­ter — fat­ter and sleek­er. Haven’t seen any that are obvi­ous­ly preg­nant yet.

strollin'

Deer walk­ing along look­ing for a bite.

In oth­er signs of spring the trac­tor now has the brush mow­er attached to it. We’ll be mow­ing the dri­ve­way verges and grass roads reg­u­lar­ly for a cou­ple of month snow.

yeah - it's too misty in the background

I was mess­ing around with Light­room and got this.

What We Saw in the Woods in July

First up we have the bear. He’s been seen a lot late­ly — includ­ing destroy­ing some of the neighbor’s bird feeders.

did I see Something over there?

day­light bear

comin' at ya'

the bear

In this pic­ture I can’t be entire­ly sure that it’s our bear and not a small­er one. The scale is hard to judge.

small?

the bear else­where — or is it a small­er bear or cub?

Next we have a cou­ple of the coy­ote. Sin­gles only this time. Not sure if we’ve still got two or if they have split up.

kind of a tough guy, no?

anoth­er of the coyote

strolling

walk­ing up the dri­ve­way — typical

Now Bob the Cat. Love­ly look at the spots on the back of his ears.

love the ear spots

bob the cat

The local buck is look­ing good. He’s putting on a decent set of antlers.

what a rack

nice shot of bucky from behind

how many points?

good look at Bucky

We had a lot of dog vis­i­tors last month.

what you looking at dude?

Har­ri­son at liberty

exploring

Ollie and companion

And usu­al count of Jim rid­ing bikes in the woods. And one of me look­ing like I’m not too hap­py about something.

Turning radius, we don't need no turning radius

Jim on the big bike.

I wonder what's with that expression?

Yours tru­ly, look­ing rather pensive.

What’s in the Woods in August

It’s been a hot, dry August. And the crea­tures are very active in the woods.

 

The coy­otes are stick­ing to the path at the bot­tom of the pasture.

where's my lunch?

com­ing and going

Oops, that’s not a coy­ote. Ollie on the move.

I already saw you

more com­ing and going — lit­tle dog this time

maybe it's this way?

more com­ing and going

The deer have been scarce. This is one of the few pic­tures I’ve got­ten. She looks well fed, but no sign of fawns.

looking for grass

Ragged Ear

Also on the path at the bot­tom of the pas­ture. The big bear.

looking at you!

Big Bear

And a rare day­light sight­ing of Bob.

nice tail

Bob the Cat

But most­ly we have bears. Many bears. It’s get­ting out of hand.

what's that?

lit­tle bear on the for­est road

where'd you guys go?

lit­tler bear

Yes, three bears. Where’s Goldilocks when we need her? These may be the small female with two cubs. Or it might three cubs. It cer­tain­ly isn’t the big very black guy that we’re see­ing down by the pasture.

which way is lunch?

long shot of the three bears

committee meeting!

a close up

And on the dri­ve­way cam­era. Jim return­ing from the first tri­al that he’s rid­den since he got that new knee last year.

good to have him back in the forest

com­ing home from a trial.

That’s the high­lights from August. Too many bears for my taste, walk­ing in the woods is get­ting to be haz­ardous. Mean­while after one of the dri­est sum­mers on record, we’re hop­ing for some rain to green up the pas­tures. More next month.