Monday, July 25, 2011

Oh Deer!

I came across a family of four deer when I drove into town the other day. There was a young spotted fawn and what looked like a mother and two adolescents. All of them allowed me to get quite close to them, which isn't unusual around here. I guess people feed them all the time so they're pretty laid back.

The fawn was impossibly cute. Wouldn't you agree?

 And what a little poser!

One of the young males (you can see his horns just starting to form) came right up to me by the side of the road as if begging to have his picture taken. Actually, he was probably begging for food. He got so close to me that I had to back up to take his picture because my camera will only focus if I'm at least six feet away from my subject. Here's his portrait.

The other young male deer was a real handful. He was constantly starting fights. Here he is acting up with what I believe is his mother. He tried to give her a good kick but mom got out of the way too fast.

Later on the same male had a showdown with mom again. I love the body language in this shot. Mom seems to be telling him, "Don't you dare try it!"

Notice the young fawn peeking out of the bushes behind mom. I can practically hear him thinking, "Oh wow, you're really going to get it now!" But the deer, being young and brash just like any other teenager, wasn't in the mood to listen to anything mom was telling him...

Temper, temper! Luckily no harm was done though. A few years ago I watched similar interactions between a male deer about the same age and his family members. In this case it was his big brother and his father (by the looks of things)...he was constantly sparring with them. So maybe this deer was just doing what comes naturally in the deer world. And sometimes what comes naturally is a little love and tenderness...

You might notice though that this isn't the trouble-making deer...this one's horns aren't as big.

Watching these deer was just the very beginning of my day. Once in awhile I have a day where I get to photograph one interesting thing after another. I'll be show and telling you about my special day coming up soon!

Interested in some silly deer pictures? Click on the link!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Sooty Grouse

There's a female Sooty Grouse that likes to live dangerously close to where I live. Drivers on the highway often have to slow down or stop entirely so that she can cross. Sometimes she just stands there staring off into space. I don't think she's "all there" and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for her.

I took the above picture during one such encounter. She was meandering along the shoulder of the highway with not a care in the world apparently. She let me get very close to her and in fact started walking towards me a few times. The picture below is one of those times...she hopped up onto a rock divider and was even feeling so laid-back that she stretched a little.

After I took this picture she got it into her head that she really needed to head over to the gas station. I couldn't persuade her otherwise. I tagged along, making sure that she got across the highway alright. Luckily no cars were coming at the time. But the gas station was so busy that I decided to steer her away from it so I ushered her into the field across the street. She settled into the grass for about five minutes.

While she was sitting in the grass I shot a little video of her. If you want to check it out, have a look at my videos of birds on my other website, Fun Nature Photography.

I probably spent over an hour altogether babysitting the grouse until I finally had to get going. I saw her about a week later standing directly in front of a car at the stop sign leading onto the highway. The woman had to get out of her car to get the grouse to move. Oh, the power of a grouse!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Beach Bunnies

Last week we went camping on Vancouver Island. Believe it or not, it was the first time I've ever stayed at an "official" campground and it was also the first time my two dogs had been camping...they loved it!

We spent our first night at a private campground and I was up half the night listening to my fellow campers who didn't know when to call it a night. We had much better experiences, however, at the campgrounds run by the provincial government...they were quiet, clean, and seemed to cater more to families and low-key types like me! And they were at least half the price. I did a little research afterwards and discovered that there are about 1,100 provincially-run campgrounds in British astounding number! It would take you three years to visit each campground.

The last night we stayed at a campground by the ocean and it was truly special. The wind was raging when we arrived and we went for a walk along the ocean as the sun invigorating experience! Another bonus about this spot was that there were bunnies all over the place. I captured this pair foraging very close to our tent early in the morning. The bigger rabbit on the left was very attentive to the bunny on the right. I thought they made a very sweet couple.

Later that day we went for a walk along the ocean's shore while waiting for the ferry in Comox to take us back to the Sunshine Coast. I found lots of seashells, and was very excited when I found my first sand dollar. Here it is...

I'm really looking forward to getting back over there again soon. I really enjoyed my camping experience!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Meet Tipsy!

I have a new squirrel hanging out on my back deck. She's even bolder than my other "pet" squirrel, Squiggy. I named the new squirrel Tipsy because she's missing the tip of her tail. And, well, as you can see she likes to drink a lot!

Tipsy has turned out to be quite a good model. Sometimes I just feed her peanuts without doing any tricks, but other times I put her through her paces and she's very co-operative. She's a great model and I guess you could say that she works for peanuts!

I have lots more funny squirrel pictures here and even more funny squirrels here.

Monday, July 4, 2011

T-Shirt Sale, Today Only!

My online store is having a sale on t-shirts today, so if you're looking for photography gifts, you might want to check it out!

You can have any one of my photos custom printed on a t-shirt and you'll get 17.76% off at checkout by using the coupon code, "LANDOFTHETEE".

Here's just one of the photos you can have printed on a t-shirt...

Remember, the sale's on for today only so if you're looking for a fun new tee, just click on the link!