Posts Tagged Wildlife

Turkeys in the Snow

These guys looked completely disgusted with the situation:

Turkeys on rail fence in snow

Turkeys on rail fence in snow

They’re about 130 feet away in a heavy snowstorm that eventually deposited about a foot of wet snow on the area.

The top rail really does slant downward: the tenon on the right end broke and fell out of the mortise.

The DSC-H5 carries the 1.7× teleadapter, zoomed all the way tight through two layers of 1955-ish window glass, hand-held, braced against the pane.

The day before that snowstorm, we biked 18 miles out-and-back over the Walkway in beautiful, sunny, mid-50s (°F) weather:

KE4ZNU-9 - APRS track - 2017-02-08

KE4ZNU-9 – APRS track – 2017-02-08

We ride when we can and shovel when we must!

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Monthly Image: Turkeys in the Trees

A turkey flock forages through the bottomlands along the Wappinger Creek and, at night, roosts in the trees at the far end of our driveway:

Roosting Turkeys - visible

Roosting Turkeys – visible

I’m a sucker for that moon:

Roosting Turkeys - visible

Roosting Turkeys – visible

It’s rising into the eastward-bound cloud cover bringing a light snowfall, so we missed the penumbral eclipse.

If you’re counting turkeys, it’s easier with a contrasty IR image:

Roosting Turkeys - infra-red mode

Roosting Turkeys – infra-red mode

Mary recently counted forty turkeys on the ground, so that’s just part of their flock. I think their air boss assigns one turkey per branch for safety; they weigh upwards of 10 pounds each!

Taken with the DSC-H5 and DSC-F717, both the the 1.7× teleadapter, hand-held in cold weather.

Searching the blog for turkey will turn up more pix, including my favorite IR turkey shot.

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Rabbit Head

Although we don’t think of this as a particularly tough neighborhood, this is the second severed head we’ve encountered in the last few years during our routine walks:

Rabbit Head

Rabbit Head

We doubt a predator would do such a tidy job of parting the head from the body, then discarding it. The eyes surely went to a bird, though…

It was across the Mighty Wappinger Creek, near the far end of Romca Rd. The Red Oaks Mill Civic Association is long gone and their building burned to the ground a few decades ago, but their name lives on.

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Monthly Image: Red Squirrel

This red squirrel has the reddest tail of all:

Red squirrel on patio - front

Red squirrel on patio – front

Those white eye rings help carry off the whole “insufferably cute” thing:

Red squirrel on patio - side

Red squirrel on patio – side

We often see them scampering through the pine treee out back, where they pause to strip the seeds off unopened pine cones and toss the empties on the driveway.

Taken through two layers of wavy 1955-era glass with the Sony DSC-H5.

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Pheasant Sighting

I rolled the bike around the corner of the garage, saw something move, and spotted an exceedingly agitated Ring-necked Pheasant atop the shredded leaf compost:

Pheasant in compost bin

Pheasant in compost bin

He ran back and forth on the pile inside the cage, apparently having forgotten he had wings, while I fumbled with the camera. Just after I took the picture, he managed a short-field takeoff and flew away through the trees away from me.

A pair of female pheasants then emerged from the forsythia behind the pile at a dead run, made a hard turn to their left, and ran off in the general direction the male had flown. One of the pair seemed smaller and may have been a chick this year, but it’s hard to say.

We haven’t seen any pheasants in the yard before and hope they return …

Taken with the Canon SX-230HS through a layer of deer netting, alas.

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Insouciant Squirrel

Squirrels spend most of their time on all fours and, when they do pop up for a look around, generally seem hunched forward, ready to drop-and-run.

Not this critter:

Squirrel leaning back

Squirrel leaning back

Definitely brandishing a big leaning ‘tude

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Grasshopper on Broccoli

This critter has been ravaging the broccoli plants in Mary’s Vassar Farms plot:

Grasshopper - Broccoli at Vassar Farms garden

Grasshopper – Broccoli at Vassar Farms garden

Nothing to do but eat, excrete, and procreate in the warm sun:

Grasshopper - Broccoli at Vassar Farms garden - overview

Grasshopper – Broccoli at Vassar Farms garden – overview

Life is good!

She can’t bring herself to mash it, as she does with the myriad other critters having no redeeming virtues. Grasshoppers, it seems, have good PR agents.

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