Tuesday, January 13, 2015

A case of winter wildlife

We've got a lot going on around the homestead, but the thing that I feel like talking about right now is our wildlife visitors. First things first, deer. None of the photos in this blog today are from the wildlife cam, they're taken by the Lady of the House with a camera because they were close enough to do so.

 The deer we're looking at here seems to be the doe that we've seen on the wildlife cam a number of times. Usually she's with her yearlings, but she isn't now. As you can see she's in fairly good shape despite the cold weather. Clearly given that she's coming up close to the house though there isn't a full abundance of food as there usually is, as the deer generally avoid being near the house. I didn't get to see her myself, but it's great to get to see deer up close in their natural habitat. Whether or not they are being the traditional "noble" deer, or derpy as we see Left.

There was some discussion on why she's so large right now. My theory is that she's eating anything that she can since she shouldn't be showing in terms of pregnancy, at least not this much at this point. Either way, the woods seem to be good to her this year. I'm looking forward to seeing if she has fawns again this year on the trail camera. Which reminds me, I need to put on the snow shoes and go up there to make sure that there are batteries in the camera and that it is in good working order.

The other big visitor right now is that we have a wild rabbit around the property which we aren't too thrilled about. My first response was to take some time and kill it for A: keeping our rabbits healthy and free from the parasites that they can get from wild rabbits and B: dinner. After a closer look by the Lady of the House though, this rabbit might be an endangered species. So until we can positively identify the rabbit we're going to be not shooting it. If it is what we think it is, it is a New England Cottontail. Otherwise known as the woods rabbit, and the gray rabbit it is a rabbit that needs woods edge, especially prosperous in the wake of underbrush burns and woods clearing. Regrowing forest and woods clearings are what they really like. That makes our land particularly good for them, and if that is a New England Cottontail, we're going to be both happy to see it doing well, but a little frustrated by some of the potential threats that it can be to our livestock and garden.

For now, we're trying to figure out who to talk to about it to positively identify what kind of rabbit it is.

No comments:

Post a Comment