Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

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karenandbill
Posts: 131
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:55 am

Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

Post by karenandbill »

Late September we decided to hike one of the trails on the western side of the park. There is not typically as much viewable wildlife as in some of the other places, but animals are there as we have seen some and lots of tracks hiking there. So we are always hopeful. It was a clear, frosty morning when we started out, and we were treated to the sound of elk bugling and a brief sighting on a distant hillside. As we climbed, we hit forest, then came to a clearing near the top. I was in the lead and caught a glimpse of a large bird heading to the ground just behind the rise of the hill. I realized with the size of the wings it had to be a great grey owl. Karen and I were both thinking on the way that we had not seen a GGO this year and there it was!

We kept going hoping we would see it come up and it obliged by landing in a tree on the edge of the clearing about 100 feet off the trail. It was a beautiful owl, almost a silvery color in the sunlight. Karen had her small camera, but she moved slowly at an angle and was able to get close enough for some shots.

ImageDSCF0227 by William Reinke, on Flickr

ImageDSCF0226 by William Reinke, on Flickr

ImageDSCF0225 by William Reinke, on Flickr

GGO's are often fairly tolerant of people, but Karen didn't want to get too close and have it fly away. So she then came back near the trail when it flew down again, but this time it stayed down for about 5 minutes out of sight. We were just about to leave when it came up again so we assume it captured a meal. We watched again for a few more minutes before heading on.

We heard another elk bugling as we hiked down, but this one was closer. Karen was in the lead and could just see the tops of its very large rack as it moved along a ridge. She said it looked like a moving antenna.

We have seen a red fox in our yard on occasion and while while we have walked the neighborhood. But we never have been able to get a decent photo. We had a snowstorm come through and drop 8 inches of snow on Monday, October 11. As I was at the kitchen window watching the snow fall, a large, beautiful red fox came trotting through our back yard. It was absolutely stunning in the freshly fallen snow, but once again it was gone in the brush before we could get a photo.

The next morning I was out feeding my chickadees, standing very still when I looked up and saw a red fox coming very near. It trotted by about 5 feet away. Once it safely passed, I quickly went inside, grabbed the camera, and headed back out. This time it stayed around for a while and even did a bit of mousing and I was able to get some good photos. This was a different fox than the one I saw yesterday as it was obviously smaller, perhaps this year's pup.

ImageDSC_0075 by William Reinke, on Flickr

ImageDSC_0062 (4) by William Reinke, on Flickr

ImageDSC_0060 (2) by William Reinke, on Flickr

As pretty as this fox is, I'm hoping to get some shots of the other fox which is even more beautiful!



Dorothy
Posts: 182
Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:45 pm

Re: Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

Post by Dorothy »

VERY cool! That great grey owl is amazing! Been looking for one all year so I'm so glad to see one through your photos. And the fox is gorgeous. If the adult is even better, it must be really stunning! Thanks for sharing.



RikWriter
Posts: 357
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:36 pm

Re: Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

Post by RikWriter »

Very nice shots of the fox! Maybe I'll get to see some backyard wildlife soon. :D



karenandbill
Posts: 131
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:55 am

Re: Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

Post by karenandbill »

RikWriter wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 11:14 pm
Maybe I'll get to see some backyard wildlife soon.
Great that you are getting out this way. Looking forward to your photos and reports!



yellvet
Posts: 216
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:54 pm

Re: Great Grey Owl and Neighborhood Fox

Post by yellvet »

Super reporting, Bill and Karen....also enjoyed your pix. pj



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