Category Archives: Animals

Frog, Big

I haven’t seen many frogs around the various ponds I visit. Usually I just hear the splash as they disappear. I heard this one and his pals in a croaking chorus long before I got to the pond. I finally spotted him near the edge of the water. At least two others were answering in the deeper reeds.

He was huge! Bigger than my hand.

Big Frog at Edge of Pond
Big Frog at Edge of Pond

This is a bit further out in the pond, which is the same pond that the Barred Owls hunt around. The frogs might live longer if they didn’t announce themselves with such enthusiasm.

Cypress Knees and Reflections in Pond
Cypress Knees and Reflections in Pond

Surprise in the Hole

I’ve walked past this tree that stands less than ten feet (three meters) from a well walked path at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens a hundred times, maybe more. Every time I notice this opening I think something should live there. An owl nest would have been fun to see.

What's in a Hole
What’s in a Hole

Imagine my surprise when I looked up yesterday and saw this looking back at me!

Mother Raccoon and Kit
Mother Raccoon and Kit

I saw the ears of a second kit, but only one looked out while mama kept a close eye out.

Mother Raccoon and Kit
Mother Raccoon and Kit

A smaller side trail allowed me to get further from the Raccoon’s den but still see the opening through some branches. One kit looked out on his own before ducking down.

Raccoon Kit
Raccoon Kit

I continued on my walk and when I passed back by this spot about an hour later there was no movement. For every bit of nature I chance upon like this I wonder how many I just miss.

Squirrel Gathering Building Material

While waiting for the Prothonotary Warbler on Knee to emerge from its nest cavity I heard an odd scraping noise. This squirrel was peeling bark off a tree.

Squirrel
Squirrel with Tree Bark

He kept pulling and stuffing it in his mouth. The strands seemed very pliable, good material to welcome baby squirrels.

Squirrel
Squirrel

Hey, I’m beeing watched!

Squirrel
Squirrel

Then he balled it all up in his mouth and scooted around the other side of the tree where I lost sight of him.

Squirrel
Squirrel

Beach, Dog Fun 2

I had been surprised that the two dogs, Green Collar and Orange Collar, from my post yesterday Beach, Dog Fun, didn’t go into the ocean surf.

This tidal pool was another matter.

Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool
Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool

Green Collar went about his business, inspecting the water surface when his buddy noticed him!

Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool
Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool

Two quick pounces and Orange Collar was all in.

Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool
Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool

Then he stopped on a dime with just a small splash, leaving his older pal standing solidly in the shallow water.

Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool
Dogs Playing in Tidal Pool

 

Beach, Dog Fun

The sun rose on two dogs who were burning energy playing on the beach, especially the one with the orange collar.

Dogs Playing on the Beach
Dogs Playing on the Beach

The owners were walking along at a leisurely pace, while one of the dogs sprinted ahead then back.

Dog Running on the Beach
Dog Running on the Beach

When he rejoined his group the other dog (Green Collar, left below), mostly let the other one run circles around him. At the point of this image Orange Collar was fully levitated.

Dogs Playing on the Beach
Dogs Playing on the Beach

 

Working for Their Supper

Middleton Place has a flock of sheep that roam the main grounds keeping them manicured. Weighted gates that close automatically behind the tourists allow foot traffic into the central green of the plantation and keep the sheep from escaping.

The sheep are looking scraggly as we head into winter; they will be shorn in the spring after lambs are born.

Grazing Sheep
Grazing Sheep

Belgian Horses are another heritage breed raised at Middleton Place. They provide carriage rides for visitors around the plantation grounds and are ignored by the sheep as they graze.

Grazing Sheep and a Belgian Horse
Grazing Sheep and a Belgian Horse

Middleton Place 
“A National Historic Landmark, home to the oldest landscaped gardens in America and an enduring, vibrant, and essential part of the Charleston and American experience.”

Dolphins Out in the River

These are from my last trip to watch the Dolphins strand feed two weeks ago. There is a lot of time when nothing much happens, you see movement and push the shutter button hoping to catch some action. Following is a collection of a few of the better moments.

This tail-up image was unusual because a few Dolphins were almost down to the mouth of the river and out in the middle. They may have been feeding or just having fun.

Dolphin Tail
Dolphin Tail

Next is a picture of the calf with his head out of the water with his mother trailing behind. They often swim so close together it’s hard to tell what part belongs to what animal.

Dolphin Calf
Dolphin Calf

This one was passing close to shore checking on the humans but not feeding.

Dolphin
Dolphin

Last, what I think is the same calf as above,  circling with his mother.

Dolphin Calf
Dolphin Calf with Mother

Click on any image for a larger view. 

Dolphins Strand Feeding, Junior Watching

This trio of Dolphins charged the beach head on instead of from the side as I’ve usually seen.

Dolphins Strand Feeding
Dolphins Strand Feeding

The Dolphin on the left was hanging on tight to his catch.

Dolphins Strand Feeding
Dolphins Strand Feeding

As they continued to chase the fish herded to the water’s edge the Dolphin in the middle got a fish.

Dolphins Strand Feeding
Dolphins Strand Feeding

I didn’t notice it at the time, but a juvenile Dolphin was watching from a safe distance. I wonder if the Dolphin on the left was holding this catch to feed the youngster or if he/she was just too busy getting back in the water.

Dolphins Strand Feeding
Dolphins Strand Feeding

Later that morning I did see the mother and juvenile working the shore in what looked like teaching of the water swirling methods.

11/06/2018