Friday, June 05, 2009

Whitetail Red-wing Interaction


Arriving at our family farm this evening, I noticed a doe with a Red-winged Blackbird perched on its back. As I photographed this unusual scene the blackbird walked the length of the doe’s back pecking periodically. I assume the bird was feeding on ticks or other insects hiding in the deer’s short summer hair.





Tired of my unwanted attention the doe fled with the blackbird, apparently not finished with feeding, giving pursuit. The Red-wing followed for over one-hundred yards before turning back.

In all of my many years observing deer this is the first time I have ever observed a bird of any kind perched on a deer’s back. Unusual occurrences do not always happen under ideal photographic conditions and this was case in this instance. These shots were made hand-held braced on a fence post from 150 – 200 yards with a considerable amount of haze, a heavy cloud cover, and a fine mist falling.



For Critters of all kinds visit Misty at her Camera Critters Blog

17 comments:

photowannabe said...

Well its good enough for an unusual occurance. Isn't Nature full of surprises?

Faye Pekas said...

I see sheep and cattle with birds on their back often but I don't think I've seen a deer with one either. I agree with Sue.. nature is full of surprises.

Montanagirl said...

They're still good pics! And that's exactly what the bird was doing. Probably doing the deer a great favor. We have a lot of cattle around here, and one always sees the Blackbirds, Cowbirds, etc., right at their feet or on their backs eating insects, etc. I think they pick a lot of seeds out of the cowpies too!

James said...

Really great capture.

Crafty Gardener said...

Great capture.

Carletta said...

Sometimes the conditions aren't perfect but it's the moment that counts in the end.
Thanks for sharing your moment with us.

My post is here: Carletta’s Captures.

Melanie D said...

awesome shot!

Brooke said...

Oh wow, that is an unusual scene. Great capture.

Snap said...

How wonderful! I really enjoyed the photos and the commentary. I'll have to read about redwinged black birds and see if it says anything about helping to de-insect deer!

imac said...

Pure Magic Coy.

pop and see Dorothy and ---

Island Style said...

At least you had a fence to brace yourself with. Beautiful shot. I generally see them on cattle or horses here but this is a unique capture- Cheers

Michele said...

Whoa, that is neat. I haven't seen that ever before as well. What a great capture!!!

i beati said...

how neat sandy

Old Wom Tigley said...

The conditions might have been bad Salty but you still managed to the shot. It just goes to show that even in your own back yard nature can throw up surprizes.

Hope this finds you well my friend.
Tom

fishing guy said...

Salty: What a neat and special encounter.

Larry D said...

Wow you were in the right place at the right time. Ive never seen this behavior on deer, lots on cattle but not deer. Great photos!

Chris said...

Excellent Coy, what an encounter!! Lucky you... Beautiful shots there.