Wildlife in our gardens


#662

Thanks. Photography was a big hobby of mine about 15-25 years ago. when film was still king. I did mostly landscapes, and my camera at the time was a Minolta SLR, and a couple of zoom lenses. Took a lot of beautiful shots from the West Coast, the Rockies, and one trip to France. But I felt like my lenses weren’t really that good, so I upgraded to a Nikon SLR and lenses, and they did awesome when I took them to Europe that year. But, digital was starting to coming on strong then (2003). so I never really used that rig again. I never thought digital would replace the detail and richness of film, but the advances in recent years are amazing, even in smartphone cameras.

Anyways, yes, please post some more pics when you can.


#663

It’s great to connect with owls. I haven’t seen any directly until this afternoon. I went outside to dump some recyclables into one of our blue bins and there across the street I see a mockingbird harrassing something on the neighbor’s ice plant. It is still covering it’s prey a bit with wings but there’s no mistaking the head of a horned owl. A few more dives from the mockingbird and it is off to a utility pole down the street and then off to points unknown. Yes! They are hunting here :slightly_smiling_face:.


#664

That’s pretty cool Richard! I was able to get a pic of this guy this spring. I’d flushed him out a few times in our woodlot, but never caught him sitting still enough for a picture (or didn’t realized it was there). I got a picture of one near the house a few years ago. This is a Barred Owl.


#665

Mrs. Oriole has sewn a nest under a banana leaf with leaf fibers … and the mockingbird chicks in the grape trellis have hatched :slightly_smiling_face:


#666

Love the pics


#667


#668

I wish I knew how to get pictures of the bats in the evening but they are extremely fast. The tree frogs, bats, dragon flies etc. are beginning to make a dent in the once thriving mosquito population. Mosquitos hide in the dense carmine jewell foliage but as you can see that dragon fly is waiting patiently.


#669

Wow!


#670

Today I saw the mother rabbit trying to eat raspberries from their lower branches. The two baby bunnies all that were left from her latest drop of five hopping around my rose garden. And then the Garter snake slithering out of my Kiwi Gold raspberry bed and my keen bowser paying no attention!


#671

Here’s the bunny!


#672

No fear!!!

Katy


#673

No kidding!


#674

The doe only had two babies survive and they have since left town. Their nest has been torn to pieces. Hey, what about my fearless pup? Lol!


#675

She’s saying “Let me at ‘em…just let me…!!!

Katy


#676

@mrsg47 & @k8tpayaso You guys are so funny!

I was going to say, “sick it fido!” I see it all cleary Mrs. G.! :grin:

Dax


#677

My chippie has watched our wabbits. Now he eats clover. Just like they do. Totally serious. Weird sweet little dog


#678

so…this happened…TWICE!!! This is just about 10 feet from my orchard. Can you believe that I found these 2 snakes just 2 days apart. And these are not some piddly garter snakes-those I can handle. These are chicken snakes, and as you can see, the first one was absolutely living up to his name. He was on his way into my chicken brood-house where he no doubt would have had a nice meal!!! This is the largest snake I’ve ever found, and honestly I didn’t know they got this large. Believe it or not, the one on the chicken pen measured 7 feet and 2 inches!!! 7 ft 2!!! Are you kidding. I must confess that I somehow didn’t see him until I was about a foot away, at which point I’m not toooo ashamed to admit I screamed like a little girl!!! ha. I rarely kill snakes, and the second one (it was “ONLY” 5’ 4 inches) I didn’t kill- put it in a bucket and drove him about 2 miles away and released him. But the first guy trying to kill my chickens went to far so…it was OFF WITH HIS HEAD! Sorry. I know they kill mice and other pests but he was killing chickens and I can’t have that. Plus he was just too big for my comfort level! haha

This guy got to live…


#679

I’ve killed aggressive snakes out of reaction. Sometimes given a situation we react in a way we didn’t expect to. When I was younger an old guy I knew trained military and police snipers and he always told me people full of adrenaline are difficult to predict. He worked on fishing poles in his spare time I would assume to gather and control his thoughts. Never can we control that initial reaction when we see a seven foot snake. Hopefully the next one goes in a bucket and goes to a nearby wild area out of harm. I don’t blame you for killing it but hopefully next time you won’t. The response is Fight or flight and what you do depends on you and of course the given day and mood your in. When I was a kid snakes were something I grew up around so I react different. Once an aggressive bunch of water snakes moved in on me and my reaction was to mow that entire area which killed a couple and at least a dozen left the area asap. They caught me in a bad mood and came after me which ended badly. My next step would have been to burn all undergrowth I couldn’t reach with the mower so luckily for them they chose option A and left. Much the same in your situation the chickens needed protected so you did the best you could at the time.


#680

Thank-you, Clark, for that kind and forgiving and interesting post. I hope you noticed that I at least did put the second snake (the one I’m holding by the head-it is alive) in a bucket and drove it a couple miles away and released it in a great place. I really and truly am not someone who kills snakes 99% of the time. Really. But what you just described and said is just a perfectly accurate description of the situation and why I killed that big one. It startled me big-time because as obvious as it is in the photo, I somehow didn’t see it until I was inches away. So my adrenaline was pumping. Then there happened to be a garden hoe right there by it, and just as you said- it was a combination of me being pumped up, maybe a little mad at it for scaring me and for hunting my chickens (which is a natural instinct I shouldn’t blame him for), and I reacted to all those stimuli. I regretted it within a few minutes. No doubt if I’d had time to think about it more- even if I had needed to walk 5 minutes to get my hoe instead of it being right there- chances are I’d have calmed down and wouldn’t have killed it. Now, what is unusual about all this is you and I are having this pretty heartfelt discussion about how I shouldn’t have killed that snake, but I will tell you now that I’ll shoot the next squirrel and rabbit I see… Not sure how you feel about that-you would likely be opposed. But the difference to me is a big one. This snake hurts no one, actually does a lot of good, and deserved to live. Animals that constantly wreak havoc on my fruit growing efforts and are highly (if not OVER) populated are fair game to me and have to go…though I almost always eat them and that helps me feel better about killing them since they don’t go to waste. Anyway, neat discussion. Thanks.


#681

Killing anything is not something I enjoy but there is times when I need to. I’ve killed plenty more things in my life more than I cared to. When I was younger I killed plenty for food and plenty to protect our chickens and other livestock. As I got older I got smarter and broke away from the old timers way of killing and learned most of the times I can outsmart my enemies and not kill them. Rabbits will kill your trees so I use tree guards but the old timers would have killed everyone they saw and some of them they would have hunted miles away for thinking about killing trees someday cause it’s in their nature. I’m not as reactive and I’m cautious feeling all things have a balance. I won’t kill when I have a choice to do anything different. Same with squirrels, raccoons, opossums etc. Animals Fear my gardens because I will electric fence them if I need to. A raccoon who feels the juice cuts a wide path around my corn patch. Everyone has their own way but my conscious is something I need to live with. If I don’t eat it I don’t plan to kill it when I can do something different and those are my own rules I live by. Some things don’t give you a choice eg. had a dog charge me years back which had it been out in the open I would have had to fight him but thankfully I closed a door and called a neighbor that time. My friend killed a pack of wild dogs that were dumped and were attacking livestock and tried attacking him. To me he is a hero he likely saved someone else’s life. It’s a tough world at times and I don’t judge people for their way of handling these things.