A New Year, and New Happenings in the Woods

Always walk through life as if you have something new to learn and you will.

~Vernon Howard

The first days of the new year have brought a few more surprises and lessons from the trail cameras scattered in our woods. Several cameras have remained in one spot for many months because they tend to record lots of activity due to their location along a game trail or creek bed. But, based on some things I have seen over time, I decided to re-position a couple of them and, in one case, slightly alter the landscape around it. Here are some highlights from the first few days (and nights) of 2023…

–The first time I saw this buck on a trail camera, I thought it had broken one antler. But in this closer view, i am now thinking it is just a small spike that formed (the other one has three points and is much longer). Perhaps an injury during antler development caused this?

–A small pool formed in our wet weather creek after a recent heavy rain. Lots of critters have visited, especially the Raccoons and a few White-tailed Deer.

— The family of Raccoons has a regular path through our woods almost every night, rooting around in the leaves as they go.

— The same camera that caught the Raccoons used to be mounted a few feet off the ground on a tree trunk. I decided to move it down near the ground to see what might look different. My first capture was this Eastern Screech Owl (who has been seen on this camera before). I think it may have caught something and gulped a bite or two.

— The owl likes to land on a piece of log sticking up in front of the camera. The problem is it is seems to be a little too close to the camera for a proper focus.

— I decided to replace the close log perch that the owl (and other critters like squirrels and chipmunks) likes to use with a small mossy log that I found nearby. The owl immediately took to it the next night, but appears to be doing some trim work to make it more to its liking.

— Here’s a daylight view of the mossy log perch with a flock of Dark-eyed Juncos feeding all around it. This small mossy patch (probably a root ball from a tree that fell years ago) attracts a lot of bird visitors – the only green open ground in a sea of fallen leaves.

— The new log attracted a lot of attention from the regulars that use this woodland path.

— The young spike buck not only head butted another deer (previous video) but decided to check out the camera as well.

— I moved the camera that was several feet off the creek to a spot with a better view down the now dry creek bed. For the second time in just a few weeks, a beautiful Bobcat made an appearance in our woods It sure looks like the cat is wearing a collar but I think it is probably just a dark patch of fur, what do you think?


8 thoughts on “A New Year, and New Happenings in the Woods

  1. I think the dark spot on the bobcat is just a patch of dark fur, too.
    THANK YOU so much for continuing to send photos/ film clips and info about the natural world around us. It rally makes a difference in keeping our crazy world in perspective. You are appreciated!!!

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