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Old 06-21-2015, 08:49 PM   #26
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Apparently today some shore birds thought our garage was an especially good place to drop shellfish from high to smash open. The roof wasn't as hard as they expected, nor was their aim that good, so we had half-mangled crabs scuttling about the front lawn while I mowed.
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Old 06-22-2015, 05:41 AM   #27
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On the whole, I think I'd prefer manna.
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Old 06-22-2015, 06:06 AM   #28
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Apparently today some shore birds thought our garage was an especially good place to drop shellfish from high to smash open. The roof wasn't as hard as they expected, nor was their aim that good, so we had half-mangled crabs scuttling about the front lawn while I mowed.
That is pretty amusing!
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Old 06-22-2015, 03:51 PM   #29
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Aw, you have lizards!

Buffleheads are small ducks that live in the Arctic during the summer and fly south to Toronto for the winter. Males and females have striking black-and-white patterning. They're very.... chic ducks. Like, if Coco Chanel had invented ducks, buffleheads are the sort of thing she'd have come up with.
Now I want to see one!
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I like in the concrete jungle, so a squirrel is about as exciting as it gets around here, or the odd fox...or rat (eww!)...
Too bad I can't send you some of my rat snakes--you're welcome to them.

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Apparently today some shore birds thought our garage was an especially good place to drop shellfish from high to smash open. The roof wasn't as hard as they expected, nor was their aim that good, so we had half-mangled crabs scuttling about the front lawn while I mowed.
Yuck.

Your birds must be pretty hard-core if the roar of a lawn mower doesn't keep them at bay.
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Old 06-24-2015, 12:13 PM   #30
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Our coyotes are bigger and nastier too. They're Eastern coyotes and have wolf blood in them. Between them and the fishers, outdoor cats did not last in our neighborhood. A neighbor even had to run out and rescue her dog from a pack of coyotes and we had one stalking our Lhasa apso.
The local bird population will be thankful -- domestic cats kill lots of birds.
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Old 06-24-2015, 01:37 PM   #31
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The local bird population will be thankful -- domestic cats kill lots of birds.
My neighbor had one cat that managed to catch a baby turkey. How he managed it without getting mauled by mama turkey, I don't know.
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Old 06-24-2015, 04:28 PM   #32
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The local bird population will be thankful -- domestic cats kill lots of birds.
Once in a great while, the birds get a bit of their own back. Great horned owls, for example, like an occasional snack of cat.
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Old 07-05-2015, 01:36 PM   #33
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These little frogs are common here and can often be found glommed onto my house's windows or siding. Another kind of critter I never saw in the Midwest.

I'll take them any day over gators and fire ants, though.
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Old 07-11-2015, 10:38 PM   #34
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Here are a couple of snaps from a trip to a local nature center last Tuesday, which is located along the bayou and includes this cypress-tupelo swamp area.

The tree in the second pic is over 1,200 years old! It must be pretty tough to survive all of those hurricanes. Apparently the only hurricane damage it sustained in recent years occurred when a much younger tree fell on top of it.



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Old 08-22-2015, 09:24 AM   #35
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Today I spotted a katydid on the trail. I had to look it up online; I've lived here all my life and never saw one around before. People doubt climate change but I keep coming across species that haven't been here in the past, or have stayed off the coast, sticking to the warmer inlands.
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Old 08-22-2015, 07:27 PM   #36
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Today I spotted a katydid on the trail. I had to look it up online; I've lived here all my life and never saw one around before. People doubt climate change but I keep coming across species that haven't been here in the past, or have stayed off the coast, sticking to the warmer inlands.
Interesting. I haven't lived in Texas long enough to know what its weather and fauna are typically like; but this area has had two major hurricanes, a near-miss for which we evacuated, and a level 1 "surprise" hurricane since I've been here, which long-time residents tell me is a higher frequency than in the past. The last major hurricane devastated our Gulf Coast beaches on the Bolivar Peninsula; they still haven't fully recovered.
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Old 08-22-2015, 08:01 PM   #37
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Interesting. I haven't lived in Texas long enough to know what its weather and fauna are typically like; but this area has had two major hurricanes, a near-miss for which we evacuated, and a level 1 "surprise" hurricane since I've been here, which long-time residents tell me is a higher frequency than in the past. The last major hurricane devastated our Gulf Coast beaches on the Bolivar Peninsula; they still haven't fully recovered.
I moved off of Long Island a few months before hurricane Sandy. Although I did have to go 2 weeks without power from relatively mild hurricane that hit Long Island the year before.
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Old 08-22-2015, 08:24 PM   #38
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I moved off of Long Island a few months before hurricane Sandy. Although I did have to go 2 weeks without power from relatively mild hurricane that hit Long Island the year before.
I have no idea how many hurricanes typically hit the East coast that far north, but having two back-to-back does seem unusual.

I'm really glad you escaped the worst of Sandy, although living in a major metropolitan area without power for 2 weeks sounds like it could be pretty rough. A lot of people here have their own generators and outdoor stuff like lanterns, gas grills, and camping stoves, which makes dealing with power outages a bit easier.
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Old 08-22-2015, 08:35 PM   #39
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We had gone maybe 10 or 15 years with no hurricanes then two in two years. I remember hurricane Gloria when I was a kid a little bit that was the biggest one before Sandy. We had this awesome Ben Franklin stove in our house at the time, so cooking was easy. Lots of trees in the northeast, so hurricanes can do a ton of damage if the trees are overgrown.
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:19 AM   #40
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I'm on the edge of East Texas myself -- Forney in Kaufman County -- so I mainly get to see skunks. (I've been lucky so far. Neither I nor the skunks regretted the encounters.) A friend up around Rockwall mostly sees possums, though.

Then there are the turkey buzzards. They're not scared of anyone, humans included. I applied for a position as a groundskeeper once and had to shoo one of them away from sizing me up for lunch!

Beyond that, I spotted a fox in Mesquite (over in Dallas County) and there are plenty of coyotes around.
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Old 09-01-2015, 12:04 PM   #41
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Archer and I had a wildlife encounter on our afternoon walk today. I walk him next to a small river/creek that runs behind our building and it is not unusual to see cranes and the occasional great blue heron hunting there. Well today we were standing under one of the few small groups of trees when a heron (which was apparently in the tree) took off from directly above our heads, squawking. Having a three and a half foot tall bird over my head is not an experience I'd like to repeat any time soon.
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Old 09-01-2015, 07:42 PM   #42
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Archer and I had a wildlife encounter on our afternoon walk today. I walk him next to a small river/creek that runs behind our building and it is not unusual to see cranes and the occasional great blue heron hunting there. Well today we were standing under one of the few small groups of trees when a heron (which was apparently in the tree) took off from directly above our heads, squawking. Having a three and a half foot tall bird over my head is not an experience I'd like to repeat any time soon.
That sounds like a lovely place to walk, and hopefully the next time you see a heron you can both appreciate it from afar.
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Old 09-02-2015, 03:43 AM   #43
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Apparently there's now a couple of otters by me.

I spotted one making it's way inland along a field boundry in march, but i met it againon the road about a week ago, where it decided to confuse any predatory instincts i may have had towards it by poledancing around a trailmarker.


The best photo of one i ever got looked like a squiggle in the distance, but
One of my neighbours is a keen amateur photographer and he has a telephoto lens.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:04 AM   #44
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Apparently there's now a couple of otters by me.

I spotted one making it's way inland along a field boundry in march, but i met it againon the road about a week ago, where it decided to confuse any predatory instincts i may have had towards it by poledancing around a trailmarker.
Nice visual

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The best photo of one i ever got looked like a squiggle in the distance...
A perfect description of the photo I tried to take last evening of a full-arc rainbow at sunset.

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...but One of my neighbours is a keen amateur photographer and he has a telephoto lens.
Those are beautiful pics! The otters in them appear to be fairly close to the sea. I always think of the ones here as hanging around tree-lined riverbanks.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:34 AM   #45
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Those are beautiful pics! The otters in them appear to be fairly close to the sea. I always think of the ones here as hanging around tree-lined riverbanks.
I think the otters have their holts further by freshwater lochs or the drainage canal. I usually see them moving inland along the fencelines.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:46 AM   #46
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I think the otters have their holts further by freshwater lochs or the drainage canal. I usually see them moving inland along the fencelines.
Lochs is such a better word than lakes. I want to start a petition to call american lakes lochs.

"Where do you live?"
"On the southern shore of Loch Ontario"



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Old 09-02-2015, 08:19 AM   #47
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Lochs is such a better word than lakes. I want to start a petition to call american lakes lochs.

"Where do you live?"
"On the southern shore of Loch Ontario"
OK, I'll sign. Maybe then a few people here in the US could actually learn to pronounce the "kh" portion of my surname.

And, Crumbling, maybe you should consider saying "loch" or something else for us in the voice thread--it would be fun to hear from you there, too!
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Old 09-02-2015, 11:15 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by MsBrightside View Post
OK, I'll sign. Maybe then a few people here in the US could actually learn to pronounce the "kh" portion of my surname.

And, Crumbling, maybe you should consider saying "loch" or something else for us in the voice thread--it would be fun to hear from you there, too!
Agree, do it. Do it sir and I will toast you with a Speyside single malt. Though not while eating haggis. No matter what poem you invoke.

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Old 09-02-2015, 12:04 PM   #49
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Last night my bf found a tiny gecko, probably a Mediterranean house gecko but it was so tiny it was hard to tell. He handed it to me and it proceeded to run up my arm, across my cleavage, into my hair, and over my shoulder. We finally caught the little guy again and set him loose onto the building wall. Unfortunately we didn't get any pics.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:35 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by agouderia View Post
My most unexpected wild life encounter (no pics though, was too surprised) was in downtown Berlin, on an icy January night right in front of the Federal Defense Ministry: A fox calmly wandered across the snow-covered parking lot at 9 p.m. (security anyone???)

What must be kept in mind though, Berlin is by far the least densely built up European capital, much less than Washington D.C. And the inner city woodland of 'Tiergarten' is just so few blocks away, so I assume that's where Mr. Fox normally lives.

Nevertheless, not exactly what you would expect on the premises of such an official building in the middle a capital city.
A few years back, a black bear swam across the Ottawa river, climbed up the hill behind the Canadian Parliament buildings, and then wandered into the Parliament's Centre Block, through a door that had been propped open to let in some air (it was August and hot, and Centre Block had no central AC at the time).

Again, not what you'd expect in a national capital - a little reminder how close many Canadians live to nature, even in our cities!
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