Yellowstone DIary 2019

September 3, 2019 End of Summer

It goes so fast. Barb and I both love the Bison, the little "Red Dogs" that now are turning into mini-Bison with the brown color instead of Red. I will remember "Legend" the 1 year pup that the guides think will become a legend because of his independent willingness to put his "paws" in the fan sometimes. The bears both black and grizzly and their cubs. and the landscape. High up in the Beartooth Mountains of Montana and Wyoming. Sunset in the Lamar Valley We hope all our critter friends will survive the harsh winter.

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September 2, 2019 Beartooth Fox

I got an image of an unusual fox the other day. Unlike the other foxes in this area I have gotten pictures of, which are basic red with black feet and ears and have short hair, this fox had long grey hair and a silvery face with a little red on his legs. I did some research and found an article about Patrick Cross of the US Forest Service who is studying these foxes he has found in the Beartooth Mountains. They are not related by DNA to the common red fox in Yellowstone National Park. He believes these are remnants of an Asia fox that travel here during an ice age. Either way they are beautiful.

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August 26, 2019 Where’s Waldo

Am I getting old? Did you ever search for Waldo? English illustrator Martin Handford created two page puzzle illustrations containing many people doing many things and you were challenged to find Wally. Finding wildlife is often like that. A complex landscape with a grey wolf somewhere. So give it a try. Can you find waldo? (not her real name) || || || \/ There she is....

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August 22, 2019 Wildflowers Galore

‚ÄĆSpring came late to Yellowstone & the Beartooths this year with snow storms occurring into June. Then snow changed to rain. Since we arrived in late June we've had more rain than last summer. Nonetheless, the mornings are more often than not cloudless. Clouds build up in the afternoon, often followed by a brief thunderstorm and, sometimes, rain lasting into the evening as successive storm clouds blow through. The extra rain has kept the risk of forest fires low and brought a provusion of wildflowers and green grasses into mid-August. By the end of July last year, most of the wildflowers...

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August 20, 2019 Mortal Combat

August is the RUT for Bison Bison Bison. The females have a very short window in which they can conceive. So the Bulls have an organ in the roof of their mouth that can "smell" the pheromones that the females emit and can tell the Bulls when the females are ready. The Bulls pick a female and "guard" her checking her constantly. During this time he will not let her near any other Bison, even her calf. If another Bull gets too close they will have "words". Most of the time a little bluff and bluster settles the issue but with two large stubborn Bulls they can get into combat. This rarely happens...

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Aug 17, 2019 Wolfers

The term "Wolfers" was originally applied to those who would kill wolves at any opportunity. There are plenty of people with an irrational hatred of wolves. In the Park the folks that come here to watch wolves have taken the term "wolfer" and used it for people who love wolves and go to great effort to see them. The wolfers in the park just want to see wolves and if the subjects are two miles away that is ok. Wildlife photographers, on the other hand, are not so enthused about seeing wolves two miles away. With a typical 600mm lens and a 2x teleconverter, yielding 1200mm you might get a usable...

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August 10, 2019 The “Whistling hare”

Every wildlife photographer has their image bucket list. Usually it contains the more difficult animals to photograph. On the top of those lists are often the Wolverine followed by Lynx, Wolf, Grizzly and , of course, the Pika. The little Pika lives in the high mountains on talus slopes with his friend the Marmot. He is cousins with the rabbit rather than squirrels and other rodents. He is a fast little sucker and my camera had a hard time focusing before he would scurry away. He gathers the plants he likes and stores a warehouse full for winter.

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August 9, 2019 Speed Demon

We went up to the top of the Beartooth Mountains last wednesday. I noticed the raptor flying above and wondered what he was. Then he tucked his wings and dove down the cliffs in front of me. No question then that he was a Peregrine Falcon. They are capable of diving at 240mph.

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July 22, 2019 The American Bison

The American Bison is our favorite animal in the Park. Most of the big attractions, Bear, wolves, Moose, Elk etc are usually a long ways away and you are looking through a spotting scope to see them. But the Bison are everywhere in the Lamar Valley. If you watch their movements and they look like they are going to cross the road it is time for a Bison jam. But we love them. We go find a pullout near the guessed crossing point and then just park and wait. Often the Bison will cross right around you allowing you to get a very up close and personal look at the animals. As long as you DON'T get out of your...

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July 21, 2019 Looking for the elusive BearClaw Bear

We went hiking at Bearclaw bakery into the high country looking for the BearClaw Bear. Helen was our guide to help find the reclusive animal. After a long hike we sighted the Bear on a rock in the snow. Yummy!

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