Tuesday, September 28, 2010

One Never Knows What's Around the Next Bend

When I set out Saturday on my walk I decided to head to the old schoolhouse that's across the river and it would be quiet and contemplative, maybe I'd take a couple of pictures.  Turned out that a neighboring rancher was going to be branding some of his cattle - and that whole operation was in the pen right next to the schoolhouse. No one objected to me hanging around to take pictures, so I did.

One of the calves as he's waiting his turn in the squeeze chute.

All of the calves were males who got castrated at the same time.  The methodology for the latter task has improved greatly - it's more of a clamping and banding technique nowadays.  Not comfortable I'm sure but the calves didn't seem to be in pain.  No, I didn't take any closeups; it just seemed too personal.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Check Out This Bug

Yesterday, I got out for my walk around 2:30 or so and spent some time tramping about on our place enjoying the sunshine and early fall warmth. When I got back to the house I decided I needed to take a progress shot of the building site (which I'll post later - it's not just a patch of dirt any more.)  I got my camera out and set up when Whap! A big bug flew into my chest and then landed in my camera bag. It was a beetle with the most amazingly long antennae. It just sat there in the bag without moving so of course I had to take pictures. Look at the face on this thing.

I spent some time last night trying to identify it - the closest I could get was Monochamus carolinensis - Carolina Sawyer - but nowhere was I able to find what the range is of this species so figured it could be something else.  I found this awesome web site What's That Bug? and sent off these photos and an inquiry to them last night.  And they replied this afternoon!  I was semi-close and at least got the genus:  they believe it to be Monochamus obtusus.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Here's Some Dirt

Photo 1 in the shop building series.  The leveled area where the concrete will be poured next week:

Saturday, September 11, 2010

It's Not Nice to Laugh at Small Creatures

This afternoon, I decided to take a walk down to the mailbox.  As I was headed home, starting the walk up the hill, I approached the second gate.  Although I was making no attempt to be secretive or quiet, nevertheless I managed to sneak up on a ground squirrel.  He or she had evidently been snoozing or otherwise spacing out in the area a few feet away from the gate.  When the GS realized how close that big scary predator was, it leaped to its feet and took off at high speed, only to run head first into the gate post.  It staggered back for a second or two, gathered what was left of its senses, leaped over the low wire of the fence and hightailed it for safety.  The predator was helpless with laughter.

The following photo is just a rather nice snapshot of Washakie.  We feel so bad for him as his poor knees are so obviously painful.  Lately, he's been somewhat more amenable to human contact, allowing and possibly even enjoying the odd scratch from time to time.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

It's a Bit Embarassing

While going up the big grade on my way to work the other morning, my attention was drawn to the pretty wildflowers that are blooming now.  All I can say in my defense is that yellow is my favorite color.


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

No Reason Beyond Cuteness

Hey there Oak Titmouse, I'm lookin' at you too!

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