On this trip to Almanor, I decided to bring my camera and take some pictures of the wildlife around our deck. Here is some wild and some not so wild.
We had a very good time on the opener and we bagged two bucks while doing it. We also ended up with a bonus pig, a nice-sized boar – weighing in at about 250 pounds.
Here are some success photos.
Son-in-law Brett got his buck Saturday morning
We spotted Brett’s buck about 8:00 AM on Saturday morning. From about 430 yards, Brett watched for a while before deciding that he was the right deer. Seeing there was a good path to about 200 yards, Brett decided to go for it while the buck remained bedded.
The 200-yard shot hit the buck in the heart. His reflexes carried him in a 20 yard circle before he fell. Turns out their were four other bucks with him.
The cocktail-hour boar met it’s demise about an hour before sunset on Saturday night. It ran into some steep country where it almost was lost, but the crew finally located him in a crevice about 100 yards from where he was shot.
Due to darkness, there we no photos taken at the sight of the kill, but here he is hanging in camp.
Joe’s buck was even further in the rough. He arrived in camp in pieces. Here’s a shot of his head and antlers. A nice 3×3 with eye guards.
My fused ankle held up well. I stayed away from slopes, but managed to get around pretty well.
(Continuing from my previous post, “Just Another Day at the Ranch”)
I stood looking at the mother ground squirrel wondering what it was doing. As I watched I realized that my camera was in the truck about 50 feet away. Would I be able to grab it and return before the squirrel departed. So far it had stood quite still unable to determine what to do.
I walked to the truck and grabbed the camera. When I returned to the squirrel, it had not moved. Apparently it couldn’t make up its mind about how to proceed. I looked at the squirrel again and the baby squirrel wiggled in the mother squirrels mouth. Now I was certain that the mother squirrel meant no harm to its baby. Occasionally the mother would put its front foot up and push the baby back into its mouth. I realized that it was likely moving the baby squirrel from one site to another.
I began to take photos of the squirrel as it moved slowly around me. It was heading towards the creek and also towards my daughter, grand son and son-in-law. I took several photos.
The squirrel passed within a few feet of the others and they got a close up view of what was going on. The squirrel disappeared into a pile of boulders and later came back out retracing its steps and probably returning for another baby to transport.
Why would it do this? The only thing that makes sense is that something like a gopher snake had invaded its nest and the mother squirrel was rescuing as many young squirrels as possible.
Seeing the hairless and sightless baby exposed to the elements was a rare occurrence.
Took the family to the ranch today. Cold and Windy. Not the kind of day that you want when looking for critters.
My grandson is wild about anything that’s alive. Everything is new and exciting. As he and his father wandered up the creek from where we parked, I began a slow walk up another draw. A ground squirrel appeared and if there had been anything else around to watch, I probably would have paid it no attention. But, I did look and it appeared that there was something in its mouth, so I raised my field glasses and looked.
This is what I saw.
Very compelling and one of the best subjects I’ve ever seen.
Yesterday I drove to the ranch to do some clean-up. With camera in hand, I stopped a few times to take photos. The day started with an encounter with turkeys just past the first gate.
The sun was high, but one photo stood out over the rest, despite the imperfect light.
Down the road a ways, a pair of mallards were doing their version of reproduction. With all the rain, one would think the local mallard crop will be good this year.
At a pond near the second gate, bullfrogs were warming in the sun at the water’s edge.
Enemies of many native species, including native frog species, bullfrogs dominate any pond they inhabit. Fortunately we don’t have bullfrogs on our ranch.
As I walked turned to step into my truck, I was distracted by a tree swallow landing in an oak tree nearly overhead. After several attempts to photograph the tree swallow, I realized that I was getting nowhere. Then this plain titmouse appeared and posed for a photo. Seems like there’s a titmouse pair for each oak tree.
Wildflowers were looking good. With the cooler-than-average weather, the annual grasses have not dominated and the broad-leaf plants will win the battle for sunlight this year. They’ve off to a good start.
On the way home, I couldn’t resist another bullfrog photo. These guys are the guardians of the water’s edge. Their legs also fry up nicely.
Red-tailed hawks were on the prowl. Some in the air and others hunting the easy way.
After leaving the gravel road, I passed through some local vineyards to see what might be available. Found a lone pair of hens, avoiding the crowd and then a big crowd of gobblers strutting aggressively.
It was a great day to be out and about.