Archive for June, 2010

28
Jun
10

Sandhill Crane in a Dew Covered Field

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A pair of Sandhill Cranes have occupied the same field since early spring.  They had at least one nestling and since they’ve continued to hang around it must be doing well.

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27
Jun
10

White-tailed Doe: Harassed by a Bird

Last year I learned about the movement habits of White-tailed Deer by following their trails or runs.  Deer will travel the same runs in order to pack down the trail so they can move quickly through an area during the snow covered conditions of winter or the muddy conditions of spring.  While I followed their trails I would watch the ground for signs of fresh footprints and other deer signs that might suggest a deer had been through recently.  That’s when I noticed a very small bird’s nest with very tiny bird’s eggs in it right on the deer run.  I nearly stepped on it and wondered how many I had stepped on.  This year, while the nesting season continues, I’m sticking to the man trails so as to not destroy any of those nests.

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Yesterday, while I took photos of this doe, I noticed a small bird flittering around in the bushes near her.  You can see the bird’s tail on the right side of the picture above.

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See the blurry blob just above the deer’s tail.  That’s the same little bird which has flown from it’s perch to poke the deer. 

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The bird landed in the tree to the left of the deer.  It would make several passes at the deer, but, before I realized what was happening, the deer decided to move on.

26
Jun
10

Whitetail Doe With Fawns

A couple weeks ago I took some photos of a doe I’ve taken pictures of since last summer.  She’s a friendly doe that is not afraid of me and has approached to within ten feet of me while I hike the park. 

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A few weeks ago I took some photos of her and realized she has been nursing a fawn or fawns.  This morning while hiking I caught a brief glimpse of her and her fawns.  She has two of them.  She didn’t stay long.  She disappeared into the brush with her fawns close behind.  The light wasn’t very good and our encounter took place along a very dark part of the forest.

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I reacted as quickly as I could, but the photos didn’t turn out very well.  Both of the fawns attempted to hide while their mother decided what to do.  She looked very nervous, but when she led them deeper into the brush her tail was still down, meaning she wasn’t afraid.

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I’m certain that within a few weeks she’ll be comfortable enough to let me photograph them properly.

22
Jun
10

At the Bird Feeder

I try to take photos every chance I get.  Lately, work is taking up too much time and if the weather doesn’t cooperate on weekends I end up with no opportunity to shoot.  This weekend I spent with my father.  When I had the chance I took the 300mm prime and shot photos of the birds at my parent’s bird feeder.

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This Blue Jay visited regularly and seemed to scare off the other birds. 

IMG_6394a It ate mostly from seeds on the ground or from the suet feeder.  The main bird feeder above the Blue Jay is Squirrel proof.  The ledge the birds sit on to feed is spring loaded.  If something too heavy sits on it, the weight of the animal, like the Blue Jay or a Squirrel, will cause the ledge to close on the feeder, depriving the larger animals from feeding.

21
Jun
10

On Father’s Day

How was my father’s fathers day?  Well, his son showed up and did stuff ‘round the house.  We changed the oil and oil filter on the riding lawn mower.  Then I rode around the yard and picked up all the sticks and branches that fell from the trees because of the storms this weekend.  Then we fixed my mom’s windmill in the backyard.  Then we cut down a pair of trees that had grown too big and too close to the storage shed.  All before lunch.

I had also gone out to the Eagle’s nest near my parent’s early that morning.

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The Eaglets can still be seen on the nest.  If you look in lower right corner of the next picture you can see one of them as it moved around the nest.

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The Eaglets should leave the nest within the next few weeks, which will make getting Eagle shots more of random encounter than a planned event.

17
Jun
10

White-tailed Deer: Taking a Stroll

Now if I could only get this young doe to show me her fawn or fawns.  Clearly, she isn’t afraid of me.

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I’m able to walk up on her because her area, they seem to stake out territories, is bordered by all grass covered trails.  Good ski trails during winter, and very quiet hiking trails this time of year.

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After checking me out from the safety of the brush alongside the trail, she stepped out onto the trail.

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She’s been feeding in the same area, so her fawn or fawns must be close.

16
Jun
10

White-tailed Deer: Running Female

I didn’t stay near the fawn for very long.  I took a few quick photos and left it by the side of the trail.  I did not want to be the reason why the mother would abandon it.  I went back to the same spot about forty-five minutes later.  The fawn had moved somewhere else, disappearing into more appropriate cover.  Near where it had been stood a big doe.

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We surprised each other.  She had been foraging near some bushes along the left edge of the trail, while watching across the field.  I walked up on her left side.  She saw me and before I could even get a shot she bolted across the field.  I watched her run until she got into the middle of the field, where she stopped.  They always check their back-trail.  She decided she didn’t like my being there, which she displays by pointing her tail backwards and then continued running across the field.

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Nothing runs like a deer.

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June 2010
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