We’ve had quite a few unusual animal visitors to our farm this last week. It seemed that every day held a new surprise for us. It’s difficult to get anything done when we’re always looking out the window to see what’s out there. But if we weren’t looking, look at what we would have missed–
We get a lot of different birds on the upper pond, but it’s difficult to get clear photos of them. This one is a Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris). The male has a black back and breast; purple-glossed, black-appearing head; pale gray flanks; vertical white mark on the side of the breast. The bill is pale gray with a white ring. The high angular shape of the head and white ring on the bill is what distinguishes this bird.
Mallard Duck (Anas platyrhynchos) Male has a green head, white neck ring, chestnut breast and grayish body.
Yesterday morning when I woke up and looked out the window I saw a large herd of Elk or Wapiti (Cervus elaphus) at the upper pond. That was quite a treat. They stayed around the area for about a half hour and then jumped the fence into the adjoining pasture. As you can see from other photos they came up quite close to the house. Do you see Bruce’s daffodils growing by the pond?
One morning we saw this jackrabbit sitting right outside the back door. It looks like something was chomping on his ear!
This is a good shot of a Red-shafted Flicker (Colaptes auratus).
Perhaps the best animal we saw this week, and certainly the most surprising was this beaver. He was just hanging out in the upper pond, swimming back and forth. Bruce was out checking the pond and looked down at the drain pipe and saw him. We’ve seen him a couple of times this week, but we thought for awhile that he had gone over to the creek. We’ll have to keep a watch on the water flow over there.
We’re busy here, still getting moved in, taking care of a myriad of details, taking classes, getting the garden ready for planting, but we are never too busy to stop and watch the fascinating wildlife. For now, that’s our most important project.