I’M BAFFLED…

LAST WEEK OR THE WEEK BEFORE, WE WERE EXPECTING BAD WEATHER LATE IN THE DAY.

AS HAS BEEN THE PATTERN LATELY, WE HAD NOTHING BUT BEAUTIFUL WEATHER ALL DAY…THE STORMS NEVER MADE AN APPEARANCE.

THEY DID MAKE AN APPEARANCE ONE STATE OVER…IN THE FORM OF TORNADOES…I BELIEVE ONE TORNADO WAS AN F-4…THIS IS A VERY BAD TORNADO, ONLY ONE LEVEL DOWN FROM THE WORST…IT PRETTY MUCH LEVELED AN ENTIRE TOWN. MY HEART GOES OUT TO THE PEOPLE WHO LIVED THERE…SO TERRIFYING AND SO TRAGIC. 

SOMETHING HAPPENED HERE THAT DAY AND I’VE BEEN WONDERING EVER SINCE…WAS A MOTHER RACCOON SIMPLY TEACHING HER BABIES THE WAY TO THE WOODS, OR DID SHE SENSE DANGEROUS WEATHER?

I WAS SWEEPING THE KITCHEN FLOOR AND GLANCED OUT THE WINDOW…QUICKLY MOVING ACROSS THE DECK OUTSIDE WAS MAMA RACCOON..”OH MAN, SHE’S GOT A RAT”, I THOUGHT. AND ALMOST AT THE SAME TIME THAT I SAID IT, I SAW BABY’S RINGED TAIL.! SHE WAS CARRYING HER BABY!!! I’D NEVER SEEN THAT BEFORE!

Moving the kits  5269 (1 of 1)

SHE DISAPPEARED DOWN THE OPENING IN THE DECK AND I WAS RUNNING FOR MY CAMERA…I WAS HOPING BEYOND ALL ODDS THAT SHE’D DO IT AGAIN.

NOT ONLY DID SHE DO IT AGAIN, SHE DID IT OVER AND OVER AND OVER…SHE WOULD BRING A BABY OUT FROM UNDER THE DECK, HURRY AS FAST AS SHE COULD TO THE WOODS AND FIVE MINUTES LATER, OUT SHE WOULD COME AND BACK TO THE HOUSE SHE SCAMPERED…BABY STILL IN HER MOUTH.

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DON’T WORRY, SHE’S NOT HURTING THE BABIES CARRYING THEM IN HER MOUTH THAT WAY.  I REALIZED AFTER A TIME THAT THERE WERE AT LEAST THREE DIFFERENT BABIES…ALL OF THEM SO YOUNG THAT THEIR EYES WERE STILL CLOSED. THEY WEREN’T ABLE TO WALK ON THEIR OWN YET, SO THEY COULD HAVE ONLY BEEN A FEW WEEKS OLD. 

I DON’T THINK THAT THEY WERE OLD ENOUGH TO NEED A NEW HOME, FROM WHAT I GATHER THEY ONLY MOVE TO A NEW LOCATION WHEN THE BABIES CAN WALK AND FOLLOW MOM.

OFF TO THE WOODS WE GO…

FORTH...
BACK AND

BACK TO THE OPENING IN THE DECK..                                                                                                                                               

5385  back she comes (1 of 1) 5639 Bringing out a kit cropped (2) watermarked

BACK OUT FROM UNDER THE DECK!

5360 Getting a better grip 5360 super crop

SOMETIMES SHE HAD TO LAY THEM DOWN SO THAT SHE COULD GET A BETTER GRIP ON THEM…SHE DIDN’T WANT TO DROP ANYBODY!

5529 getting a better grip (1 of 1) copy 5533 let's try this again 2 cropped watermarked 5536 Determined croppedwatermarked 5503  prepare for nat geo and blog  watermark

SHE KEPT THIS HARD WORK GOING FOR TWO AND A HALF HOURS AND THEN I DIDN’T SEE HER, I FIGURED SHE HAD FINALLY SETTLED DOWN FOR THE DAY. SHE MUST HAVE BEEN EXHAUSTED.

I WAS AMAZED WHEN I REALIZED AN HOUR LATER, THAT SHE HAD RESUMED HER ACTIVITY…SHE DIDN’T CONTINUE FOR AS LONG THIS TIME…THERE WERE DEER BETWEEN HER AND THE WOODS AND ANOTHER RACCOON WAS THINKING ABOUT GETTING UNDER THE DECK. SHE HAD HER HANDS FULL.

SINCE THAT DAY, I’VE NEVER SEEN HER DO THIS AGAIN…THE BABIES STILL SLEEP UNDER THE DECK, I HEAR THEM CHIRPING A TINY BIT. SO NOW MY FRIENDS…ANYONE OUT THERE KNOW WHAT WAS HAPPENING THAT DAY?

I’VE LEARNED THAT BIRDS CAN SENSE A BIG STORM WHEN IT’S AS FAR AWAY AS FIVE HUNDRED MILES. DID THIS MOTHER KNOW THAT SOMETHING BAD WAS HAPPENING? WAS SHE LOOKING FOR A SAFER SPOT FOR THE BABIES…SHE WAS FAIRLY FRANTIC THE WHOLE TIME THAT SHE DID THIS…SOMETIMES SHE’D ONLY GO A LITTLE BIT AWAY FROM THE DECK THEN BRING THE BABY BACK, TUCK IT UNDER THE DECK AND TRY AGAIN WITH ANOTHER BABY.

WHAT DO YOU THINK WAS HAPPENING?

THE SUPERVISOR…

5024 My helper (1 of 1)

SOME OF YOU HAVE MET OLIVER BEFORE…HE’S ON LOAN TO US FROM THE “MUSEUM OF THE SON WHO HAD TO MOVE AWAY FOR A JOB”.

I THINK THAT HE MAY REMAIN ON DISPLAY HERE…BUT, WITH SON’S BLESSING OF COURSE.

THE MOMENT THAT I GO TO MY DESK TO BEGIN WORKING ON MY “SUPER SECRET PROJECT”, OLIVER JUMPS UP ON SAID DESK AND FINDS THE MOST INCONVENIENT SPOT POSSIBLE TO STRETCH OUT ON. 

HE NEEDS TO BE ABLE TO TOUCH AND FEEL EVERYTHING THAT I PICK UP.

HAVING COMPLETED HIS QUALITY CONTROL CHECK, HE LAYS ON TOP OF THE SMALL ITEMS THAT I NEED TO WORK WITH…I’VE TOLD HIM REPEATEDLY THAT THEY DON’T NEED TO BE WARMED UP TO BE USED.

I ASKED IF, AS MY SUPERVISOR, HE COULD COMPLETE MY QUARTERLY JOB REVIEW FORM.

HE TOOK THE FORM BACK TO HIS OFFICE AND AN HOUR AND A HALF LATER, HE RETURNED IT TO ME.

NOW I’M AFRAID THAT I’M GOING TO BE FIRED…

HE HAD WRITTEN ONLY THREE WORDS ON THE FORM…”YOU’RE LAZY, ZANNYRO.”

NO ONE CAN JUDGE YOU LIKE A CAT.

 

DON’T MOVE AND SHE WON’T SEE US…

5671 Dash and friend by the river (2) (1 of 1)

DO YOU SEE THE TWO “STATUES” ON THE FAR RIGHT? I WAS FEEDING THE BIRDS THIS MORNING AND WAY DOWN BY THE RIVER I SAW THESE TWO DEER WATCHING ME.

5671 Dash and friend by the river (3) (1 of 1)

THERE WAS NO WAY THAT I COULD GET CLOSER TO THEM WITHOUT THEM “HIGH-TAILING” IT OUT OF THERE, (When deer get alarmed they hold their white tails straight up and run),SO I’VE CROPPED THE IMAGE  A FEW TIMES SO THAT YOU CAN SEE THEM A LITTLE BETTER.

5671 Dash and friend by the river (4) (1 of 1)

NOW THIS IS NOT A GOOD IMAGE, BUT I WANTED YOU TO SEE SOMETHING THAT HELPED ME TO IDENTIFY ONE OF THE DEER.

ABOUT TWO SECONDS AFTER I TOOK THE SHOT, THE DEER ON THE LEFT DID RUN OFF INTO THE WOODS. THE DEER ON THE RIGHT STOOD AND CONTINUED TO WATCH ME.

WHEN I CROPPED IN THIS SEVERELY ON THE IMAGE, I KNEW WHY SHE HADN’T RUN.

SHE’S “DASH”, A DEER THAT’S BEEN COMING HERE SINCE THE DAYS OF “MAMA”, THE THREE LEGGED DEER. I CONSIDER HER MAMA’S SISTER AND I WOULD GUESS THAT DASH IS AT LEAST FIVE YEARS OLD NOW. 

DASH APPARENTLY FEELS SAFE AROUND ME AND DOESN’T PANIC.  HOW DO I KNOW IT’S DASH…BY ZOOMING IN, YOU CAN SEE THE WHITE “DASH” BETWEEN HER EYES…THAT’S MY GIRL, DASH.

I THOUGHT THIS WAS THE DEER PATH?…

Turkeys follow the deer path  5142 (1 of 1)

I’M NOT SURE WHAT’S GOING ON HERE…THIS IS THE OPENING THAT THE DEER USE TO CROSS INTO OUR NEIGHBORS PROPERTY…DO THESE LOOK LIKE DEER TO YOU?  AMAZING..WILD TURKEYS!!!!!!!!!!

Turkey Walk 5152 (1 of 1)

COUNTED EIGHT! POSSIBLY NINE!  LOOK AT THOSE BEAUTIFUL MARKINGS…

A WEATHER COMMENT…

IT’S NOW AFTER FOUR AM AND THE THREAT FOR TORNADOES HAS PASSED AND THE WIND IS FINALLY DYING DOWN. TIME TO HEAD FOR BED, BUT…I’M HOPING THAT NONE OF YOU OUT THERE HAVE BEEN IN THE PATH OF THE TORNADOES THAT DID SO MUCH DAMAGE AND DESTRUCTION…STAY SAFE MY FRIENDS…IT MAY BE BAD FOR ALL OF YOU SOUTH AND EAST TODAY.

THERE IS SUCH A THING AS A FREE LUNCH…

WELL, THE DEER HAVE BECOME REGULAR VISITORS LATELY. I’VE IDENTIFIED “DASH”, A DOE WHO’S BEEN COMING HERE FOR AT LEAST FIVE YEARS AND SHE HAS A DOE WITH HER. MORE THAN LIKELY THIS IS HER DAUGHTER FROM LAST YEAR.

I SEE SIX TO EIGHT DEER A NIGHT, IF THEY DON’T SEE CORN ON THE GROUND THEY STAND AND STARE INTO THE WINDOWS.

I THOUGHT DINNER WAS ESPECIALLY DELIGHTFUL TONIGHT. LET'S HEAD ON OVER TO THE SMITH'S HOUSE, I SAW THEM EATING PIE ON THEIR PORCH.

I THOUGHT DINNER WAS ESPECIALLY DELIGHTFUL TONIGHT. LET’S HEAD ON OVER TO THE NEIGHBORS HOUSE, I CAN SEE THEM EATING PIE ON THEIR PORCH.

I SEE HER…SHE'S IN THERE!