Wednesday, December 29, 2010
it seems the last few days have been full of creatures, both wild and fenced. my parents' property tends to be especially overrun, but at this time of year it seems easier to spot wild animals as they come out in the open in search of food. above is a black-tailed deer i spotted out the window on boxing day. there are often does and their young moving through the yard, but a buck is a slightly more rare sight. he was very alert, and once he saw me he stepped quickly up the drive into the forest's edge, although once there seemed a bit more secure and paused to nibble some leaves before disappearing. in this second shot you can see him high-stepping along with isabella the sheep watching in the background (i suspect she was more interested in me, and if i had any treats to offer!).
speaking of sheep, there are three ewes right now on the "farm". after the torrential rain we had for several days on end, they were looking at bit worn and wet, but probably a lot warmer than me with those thick wool coats.
Cookie seemed to have made a good mess of herself, turning into a green sheep from her eagerness to eat her alfalfa.
the sheep have two alpaca neighbours, who seemed a bit more put out by the rain, or rather the indignity of being photographed in such condition. i guess they all have covered areas to be in when the weather sets in, but usually prefer to be out in the field, so it can't be all that bad. however cuzco was not thrilled as i snapped a few shots of him - a few later on have him with his ears flattened in displeasure, and i suppose i was lucky i was not within spitting range. the second set of ears behind him belong to quito, who is generally a bit more friendly. quito is also a full alpaca, while cuzco is half alpaca and half llama.
as mentioned on monday, the birds were frantic around the feeders much of the weekend as stormy weather blew through. my mom usually tries to put out enough food for each day, but not too much to avoid nighttime visitors. three fat masked bandits appeared on the deck on sunday night though, eagerly scooping up any bird seed left to be found. the two smaller ones were a bit more shy and ducked into the shadows, but big mama racoon was feeling a bit more brave even as my young nephews squealed eagerly on the other side of the glass.
finally back at home, things were a bit more quiet at my own feeders. this varied thrush visits often though (i can only assume it is the same one each time), darting about the lawn and bird house and up into the bare fruit trees as he flits about the yard.
what about you? do you notice the wild animals more at this time of year? or is it just different animals that you see than in the warm months?