Kip’s Comments 2-23-14

Ice Frost Pattern - Image 239264

Nature’s Art and Man vs Beast (Warning: Graphic!)

Even though our air temperatures still aren’t climbing very high, it is evident the sun’s warming power is growing. In areas where the sun’s rays were focused, snow melt was in progress. As the melting occurred, the snow and ice created unique artistic patterns. To see Nature’s artwork required me to be on my hands and knees, but it was worth it.      

Ice Frost Pattern - Image 239264

Ice Frost Pattern – Image 239264

 

Ice Frost Pattern - Image 239261

Ice Frost Pattern – Image 239261

 

Ice Frost Pattern - Image 239260

Ice Frost Pattern – Image 239260

 

Frost Ice Pattern - Image 239252

Frost Ice Pattern – Image 239252

 

In our backyard we still did not have any uncommon visitors – just the routine species.  

American Tree Sparrow:  

American Tree Sparrow - Image 239236

American Tree Sparrow – Image 239236

 

Black-capped Chickadee:    

Black-capped Chickadee - Image 239239

Black-capped Chickadee – Image 239239

 

White-breasted Nuthatch:    

White-breasted Nuthatch - Image 239249

White-breasted Nuthatch – Image 239249

 

NOTE: My post is about to get graphic.  You have been warned. As I drove home from the cabin this morning, I noticed a crumpled carcass along the shoulder of the road. It was clear the animal – a coyote – had been hit by a vehicle. I stopped to shoot a few pictures since I seldom see a coyote – dead or alive. Knowing food (carrion) for large predators is scarce this time of year, I planned to return to see and photograph (if possible) bald eagles feeding on the dead animal. When I went out later to check for eagles, the area was clean. There was no animal, no fur, nothing – only a few blood stains in the snow. It never dawned on me that the carcass had monetary value for a fur-harvester. 

Dead Coyote - Image 239228

Dead Coyote – Image 239228

 

Dead Coyote - Image 239234

Dead Coyote – Image 239234

 

In our area coyotes are probably at the top of the food chain. Coyotes are smart animals that have learned to adapt to living with humans. Even though we are surrounded by coyotes, many people never see them. This one appeared very healthy, but was no match for a vehicle on the highway.

 

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