Monday, April 30, 2012

It is definitely harder finding wildlife than it was last  year when we had so much snow that they were all bottled up at lower elevations.  It remains very dry and the snow level is a lot higher in the mountains than normal.  But I did locate these elk and got above them for a pastoral like scene of them enjoying the first rays of the sun and green growth for breakfast.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

When I first saw him this early morning he was standing atop a hill in the Sagebrush but as I approached dodging snow banks in the road he was off with that ungainly Moose trot over the hill and into some timber.  I drove my truck on over the hill on the dirt road and stopped where I thought he might reappear.  I was not disappointed as he did perfecto several moments later and without breaking stride he strolled off the hill too close for even my telephoto lens and crossed the road in front of me and up that hill into the timber.
Interestingly just down the road I saw another cow moose traversing the opposite hill.  A little too far for good pictures but watched her settle down in a short willow draw and commence doing breakfast.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

I love these old snags.  So full of character.  What stories they could tell.
Don't be surprised to find this one in a future painting.

Friday, April 27, 2012

I had a couple of hours to kill yesterday afternoon so up Horse Creek I went and was nearly home when I came across several mule Deer accompanied by several Magpies.  After yesterdays post of the Raven I thought this was perfect to post the Ravens cousin[scientifically]The Black Billed Magpie.  Another of the Wests iconic images and interesting character.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Raven.  One of the wests most interesting birds.  Can't help thinking about Edgar Allen Poe whenever I see one.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

After a winter of hard living wildlife enter spring a little disheveled looking.  With shedding about to begin they will even look worse but this Moose is now finding green browse so good times are ahead for her.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lodgepole Pine [Pinus contorta]
A very important evergreen in the Rocky mountain west.  Named for the use by the indians who used this tree for the small diameter straight growing trunks that made up their tepees or know as Lodge poles.  These trees have serration's cones that mean the cones  open with heat such as in a forest fire releasing their seed that then germinate on burned soil regrowing a forest.  The year after the fires of "88" in Yellowstone the land was covered in new growth of Lodgepoles.  today these trees are quite tall with their extraordinary growth. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Sunset last evening. Ramshorn Peak from the Dubois Overlook.  After an abnormally warm day of 79 degrees.  Very warm when you consider our average for this time of year is in the low 50's.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Interestingly.  Ran into these fellows who obliged me by posing and offering a perfect example of Antlers this time of year.  The Bull on the left has only one antler having dropped the other.  The middle Elk still carries his hardware and the Elk on the right has lost both his and new growth is beginning.  I am surprised that the two are still carrying theirs as most all have lost theirs by now.  Spike bulls will carry theirs for some time and there were several with this bunch that did have theirs.  Interestingly Antler growth is the fastest growing biological material in nature

Saturday, April 21, 2012

There is nothing on earth as beautiful and graceful as the Trumpeter Swans.  These were enjoying the morning on a pond along the Buffalo River.

Friday, April 20, 2012

April 19, 2012

Searching for several grizzlies with cubs that we were unable to locate we were surprised when this large Boar Grizzly emerged out of the willows and with a purpose in mind never hesitated in traveling across the Willow and grass covered flats.  He was not in the least deterred from his destination by several Canadian Geese pairs who voiced their disapproval at his passing.  On he went until he was just a dot way north of us and disappeared back into the willows.