Wildlife Neighbors & the Private Life of Mother Nature

Not even noon on Halloween and already the first trick-or-treater is at the door. Need to get more fun-size salt licks.

After 34 days without success Dottie and Rusty Gunderson began to question their choice of location for spotting the elusive acorn woodpecker.

Promo photo for a program rejected by the Discovery Channel – Jimmy Buffet Stalks Bear Insomniacs.

Every Wednesday Doris Elk stops by the back window to share forest gossip. Today’s bombshells: The Bluebird of Happiness suffers from depression and Smokey Bear’s real name is Seth Leibowitz.(Evergreen, Colorado)

With herd breeding-rights at stake Gary and Darren size each other up before engaging in one of nature’s great annual dramas – mule deer tetherball. (Evergreen, Colorado)

Unbeknownst to Larry it wasn’t his tracking collar that so annoyed the other mountain goats. (Mount Evans, Colorado)

Kenny the Cardinal’s 2-year reign of preying upon the hopes of the colorblind in exchange for seed ended today when authorities arrested him for falsely impersonating the Bluebird of Happiness. (Colden, New York)

I don’t know. Maybe I’m too thin-skinned. I remind myself to ignore them, but an otherwise perfect hike on a perfect day was again ruined by the relentless barrage of two-legged insults hurled down from above. (Chicago Lakes below Mount Evans, Colorado)

Proof that Mother Nature is a doodler. (Gothic Valley in Crested Butte, Colorado)

Daytime photo of the Big Dipper.

In retrospect I picked the wrong morning to stand at the kitchen window wearing a salmon-colored shirt. (Evergreen, Colorado)  

A spruce tree’s version of photobombing. (Evergreen, Colorado)

After several puzzling hours of thinking, “I don’t recall shrubbery outside the back window,” an inadvertent twitch of the elk’s left ear finally compromised its otherwise deft understanding of camouflage. (Evergreen, Colorado)

Hats off to the Mule Deer Historical Society for its stunning reenactment of the Battle of Hastings. Already I look forward to next week’s reenactment of the Sacking of Rome. (Evergreen, Colorado)

Mother Nature in curlers. (Near Garden City, Kansas)

To save money on lawn ornaments I pay Larry the Mule Deer one salt lick per month to stand motionless outside my deck every Tuesday and Thursday. (Evergreen, Colorado)

After being blocked from exiting my deck a tense 7-hour standoff came to an end when I finally acquiesced to Bud Bear’s demands and revealed where I kept my garbage. (Evergreen, Colorado)