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Posts Tagged Wildlife

Monthly Image: And Then There Were Two

The turkey hen who once had nine chicks, then seven, now has only two:

Turkey Hen with two chicks
Turkey Hen with two chicks

We haven’t seen the fox since it nailed the previous chick, but it may be responsible for taking a chick a day, every day, for a week.

We wonder if she misses the rest of her brood as much as we do …

Taken through two layers of 1950s window glass, zoomed all the way in, with a phone camera.

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Chipmunk Shelter

This chipmunk has been hanging out near the collection of yard & garden tools on the patio:

Chipmunk near patio shelter
Chipmunk near patio shelter

When threats appear, the critter vanishes into the clutter and waits until we go elsewhere. It’s almost as good as the roof gutter pipe!

Those stripes remain surprisingly visible in the shadows between stacks of clay pots, though, if you know where to look.

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Monthly Image: Turkey Hen and Chicks

Mary saw a fox trotting behind the garden, gripping a (dead) turkey chick in its jaws, with the hen in hot pursuit. The fox dropped the chick, circled the pine grove, picked up the chick, and departed stage right. The hen eventually led her remaining chicks into the yard, but gathered them underneath while watching for danger:

Turkey hen with chicks - alert
Turkey hen with chicks – alert

She settled down for a few minutes:

Turkey hen with chicks - resting
Turkey hen with chicks – resting

With the fox safely departed, she released the chicks:

Turkey hen with chicks - emerging
Turkey hen with chicks – emerging

Then they returned to foraging, with one chick trying out its wings:

Turkey hen with chicks - dispersing
Turkey hen with chicks – dispersing

Two days earlier, she led nine chicks through the yard; we think the fox picked off a chick a day. She lost two more during the next four days, suggesting they rapidly improve their ability to scamper out of harm’s way.

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Pileated Woodpecker At Work

A loud rat-a-tat-a-tat drew our attention to a Pileated Woodpecker excavating a tree along Rt 376:

Pileated woodpecker
Pileated woodpecker

Pileated woodpeckers sculpt their holes with great care, often inspecting their work for smoothness and, perhaps, lunch:

Pileated woodpecker - exploring hole
Pileated woodpecker – exploring hole

Those holes go deep enough inside the tree to serve as shelters for smaller birds during storms.

We occasionally see and hear them, as well as their smaller relatives, remodeling trees around the house. Good hunting!

Taken with the Pixel XL zoomed all the way tight, cropped and sharpened a smidge.

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Turtles!

Spotted in Lake Walton on an out-and-back ride to the Hopewell Junction Depot end of the rail trail:

Turtles - Lake Walton - 2019-03-14
Turtles – Lake Walton – 2019-03-14

Mary counted & guesstimated fifty turtles in the backwater.

They’re the snuggliest turtles I’ve ever seen:

Turtles snuggling - Lake Walton - 2019-03-14
Turtles snuggling – Lake Walton – 2019-03-14

Taken with the Pixel XL at maximum zoom, hence the gritty overpixelization.

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Bird Box: Flowing Ice Sheet

It’s early springtime in the Hudson Valley:

Bird Box - sliding snow sheet
Bird Box – sliding snow sheet

The birds have been making companionable springtime noises, but it’ll be a while before the nesting season starts up.

Taken with the DSC-H5, diagonally through two layers of 1955-ish window glass.

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Squirrel Exploration

We spotted a motion twitch outside and finally figured out what was going on:

Squirrel in rotten branch hole - 1
Squirrel in rotten branch hole – 1

There must be something yummy down inside that branch scar, but you gotta keep checking your six:

Squirrel in rotten branch hole - 2
Squirrel in rotten branch hole – 2

Where’s a hawk when you need one?

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