Critter Watch 2017

Critter Watch 2017 is in full swing.  So far, with Roxy and Otis’ expert help, we have been very successful in spotting the different beings in and around our property.

Otis found a garter snake sunning herself along our rock wall.

Her name is Hortense and Randy and I are pretty sure she lives in the rocks.

Garter snakes, or gardener snakes are harmless and are actually beneficial to your yard and garden, as they eat slugs and rodents and anything else that they can overpower.

This is Hortense’s mate, Edmund.  They are not married, so he lives on the other side of the rock wall, and slithers into the woods when Otis and I get too close to him.

Apparently, Edmund does not know it is not polite to stick out ones tongue.

After posing for a few photos, Hortense and Edmund headed off into the coolness of the woods.

Recently, we have discovered that Edmund has shed his skin and is now naked in the woods.

One morning Roxy and Otis discovered a porcupine near the garage.

The porcupine was concealed under the leaves and brush and I couldn’t see much of him.  At first, I thought it was a cat.

After figuring out what it actually was, I knew that I had to get the dogs away.  I had big plans to do nothing all day and an emergency trip to the vet was not on my list.

Porcupines are mostly nocturnal, so the chances of him heading to a dog-free house during the daylight hours were slim.  Sure enough, he stayed in the same spot until sometime during the night.

All day long, Otis kept going back to check out Pork E Pine.  Roxy has a healthy respect for critters.  Otis, well, he is just too curious and friendly for his own good.  Thankfully, there were no quills stuck in Otis’ nose.  Or anywhere else on him.

Not a shining example of my photography skills, but this doe wandered out of the woods onto the road.  She stood there for a while to tease Roxy and Otis for a bit.

For the second year in a row, Western Bluebirds have nested in a gap in the peak of the roof of our RV port.  It was very hard for me to actually see inside the nest, let alone get any decent pictures, but I believe that I saw at least three babies.

This is the second baby that I saw.  While I did see a third tiny beak wobbling around in the back of the nest, I could not get a clear shot of him.

You can barely make out the third babies beak towards the back of the picture.  Momma and Papa are on their second brood for this year, nesting in the same spot.  I hope that next year, they can be a bit more courteous and allow their hostess a few pictures of the babies before they leave the nest.

We have been visited by a robin who does a crazy dance while fighting himself in the reflection in the windows of the Jeep’s hard top.  He also pecks at the 5th-wheel, just outside the bedroom.  At 5 o’clock.  In the morning.

I noticed a robin sitting on an old nest from last year.

I dragged the ladder close and kept watch.  Sure enough, in a few days, the first baby robin hatched.

The next morning, there was sibling …

… And by the next day … TRIPLETS !

I love their wispy feathers.

“Feed me, feed me!”

Mom showed up with a snack just in the nick of time.

In less than a week, the babies grew up.

Is he thinking about taking the plunge out of the nest?

He must be, because the next morning, the nest was empty.  My robin babies left without a goodbye.

This is Mad Squirrel.  He doesn’t come around often, but when he does, he gets very mad at Roxy and Otis.

He chatters up a storm to them, telling them, I am sure, not to get so close to his tree.

And just an hour ago … here come three momma turkeys with a herd of turklettes !

Randy and I have not given up hope on seeing the moose we hear talking to each other early in the mornings and most evenings.  Or, the strange critter that barks at the coyotes in the middle of the night.

What do you think?