Pleasant Surprise

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This white tailed deer was photographed on a recent trip to visit family in the midwest. Living in the mountain west for so long I can say for certain I don’t miss the humidity and all the bugs. It sure was fun was running across this deer happily feeding away and hardly giving us a second look as we hiked through the woods. I had forgotten how small white-tailed deer can be.

Milk Weed Portrait

Milk Weed, from bud to flower, posing nicely in the evening sunlight.

Everywhere we look on our daily walk milk weed is springing forth. Most plants have buds just waiting to burst into flower while a few have started their blooms. We all know milkweed is an important flower for the Monarch Butterfly but given its abundance it helps sustain many pollinators both large and small.

Summer is truly upon us…on your mark, get set….go.

 

Along Clear Creek in Denver, CO.

More Sounds of Silence

Sound to take in without sound to block out.

Although I posted this  a week ago I just became aware of this new study on noise in our national parks and thought it important to pass along. The link is below.

https://www.nationalparkstraveler.org/2017/06/sounds-nature-national-parks-are-being-trampled-noise

Yes it is more than just a feeling ….Noise levels in our wild places are increasing at a rapid pace and what the consequences are only time will tell. Unless we respect that silence it seems it will soon be gone.

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Yes, Silence has a sound that is becoming silenced.
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A Prairie Dog’s Song

This song seemed to be a gentle warning call but I could be wrong. However, biologists studying Prairie Dogs have discovered they have a complex language and perhaps one day we will understand it. Another discovery that suggest we are less different and more alike on this planet.

Pawnee National Grasslands, CO.

13 lined Ground Squirrel

The photo is a bit blurry but so was our encounter with the 13 Lined Ground Squirrel. We were watching a Prairie Dog Colony and there was one Prairie Dog that just did not seem like the others. He was thinner and smaller. They would stand up tall and then quickly dart to another location very rapidly. They were much more hidden in the grass as well. We tried over and over to get a good look but this is  the best we got that afternoon. A fleeting glimpse of a magnificent 13 lined ground squirrel.

http://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Spermophilus_tridecemlineatus/

Seeing a new animal made me realize once again that life is so diverse and wonderful and there is so much yet to see.

Outta Here

Outta_here

While near Lake John in Walden, CO we came across a Cinnamon Teal Bachelor trying to move in and displace the male of the pair from several groups that had already paired up. Each time the bachelor came close the males would bob their heads in display and when the bachelor got too close the paired-up males would chase the bachelor off. Sometimes the chase was mild but in this case the chase was full throttle as the paired male dove from the shore and chased the bachelor with all his might. The bachelor was persistent in his attempts but when we left he had yet to displace an already paired up male from his female.