For most of their species, Sandhill Cranes are migratory, heading north in the summer and returning in the winter. Central Florida has a population of non-migratory cranes. These large birds mate for life and can live for over thirty years. They can also become used to humans, although their confidence should not be confused with being harmless or domesticated: they are a wild animal and will protect themselves if felt threatened. Click on the image for a larger view.
When taking Hikari out at night, we mostly hear the wind in the trees. Most animals keep a distance from the house because of our dog. So it is always a surprise to hear the sound of a large mammal being startled, as happened the other night. The next day, not only we found evidence of the animal, but also of its other two companions. We often see small herds of deer this time of year, but they usually avoid the area around our house. Click on the image for a larger view.
Sunday was unusually warm. Naomi and I spent an hour or so sitting in the sun on our deck watching the visitors to our bird feeders. One of these visitors was a Tufted Titmouse. Not an uncommon bird, but a shy one. After the Chickadees came and settled in, this one joined them. Not confident enough to feed on the feeder, it would return to the adjacent apple tree as soon as it plucked a seed from the netting. Click on the image for a larger view.
The galvanized steel bucket in our garden has a new resident. The bucket is full of rain water and our friend is either swimming or perched on the rim. The mystery is how the little fellow figured out it had water in it—he (or she) is a little short to be able to see into the bucket from the ground. Click on the image for a larger view—its eye is amazing.
Wildlife looks cute, like this harbor seal pup, but they will not think of you as cute. Marine mammals are found along the coast of Maine. If you think an animal is injured or abandoned, call Maine Marine Animal Reporting Hotline at 1-800-532-9551. Do not approach the animal or try to handle it—not only is it illegal to handle marine mammals, but also they will bite. Appearances can be deceiving; mothers can leave their pups on a beach for up to 24 hours. Click on the image for a larger view.