Monday, June 23, 2014

Changing Focus

As I noted in a post at the beginning of the month this year has been a year of dramatic change in my life.  The change began with my father's passing and every time I think that I am beginning to arrive at the new "normal" something else changes yet again.  This has been a year of loss and at the same time a year of gain.  It has been a time of renewing and repairing of old relationships and the building of new ones.  In the midst of all of the change my wildlife photography has had to take a backseat. 

While outdoor photography has taken on lesser roll in my life temporarily I still make time occasionally to enjoy to the peaceful solitude of daybreak on the water. 

An hour spent one Sunday afternoon watching a pair of red-headed woodpeckers carry insects to their young was a special treat.  I located this den tree last year and upon checking it this summer was elated to find that it housed not only the red-headed woodpeckers but a nest of yellow-shafted flickers as well.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Wildlife Babies Arriving

While it has been over about two months since I first encountered the fox pups back in April, wildlife babies continue to arrive.  The big event over the past week has been the arrival of the whitetail fawns.  I spotted my first one of the season Sunday morning.  While its not much of a fawn photo it is the best I was able to capture as the mother lead her new charge to safety.
A little later as I was driving along a dirt road I noticed a black object lying in the entrance to a pasture.  I was already past the lane by the time I was able to stop, having to back up for a second look.  At first I could not identify it but as I reached for the binoculars a head and long neck stretched up.  Identifying it as a wild turkey hen I immediately suspicioned that she was hiding her poults with her body.  While I waited a few minutes, other than to move her head the hen remained motionless.
As my time was running out and I needed to be on my way I hit the trucks ignition.  The sound of the engine starting was just enough to startle the hen into moving, revealing her brood of about a dozen poults.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Changing Times

The one thing in life that remains constant is change.  Everything in our world is always changing and for the whitetail deer it is that time of year when they are making the change from their cold weather coat to the light coat of summer.  I photographed this yearling buck early this morning.  While parts of his face has lost the long hair of winter, the remainder of his face and his entire body is still covered by the now sun-bleached lifeless hair.
Also photographed this morning, a two year old buck grooms in the first rays of morning sunlight.  With his antlers growing rapidly now the buck has completed the transition to his thin, red, summer coat.  For the does, now is the time for birthing the new fawns.  While I have not yet seen any new fawns I have noticed a couple of does with plump udders; a sure sign that they have new-born fawns hidden nearby.
And while things are changing rapidly in the world of the whitetail deer, rapid change has been occurring in my life as well.  Instead of spending my spare time pursuing wildlife photography as I once did I am now using much of that time to manage the small herd of cattle and whip the farm into shape.  As the regular readers of Country Captures know some of my favorite wildlife shots are of deer and elk lip-curling during their respective ruts.  Now the rut can happen any day as evidenced by my new herd bull performing the lip-curl just the same as is done by his distant relatives in the wild.