WAITING FOR WINTER
Over centuries wildlife have adapted to their survival strategies finely tuned to their native habitas and seasons. As the climate changes more quickly, wildlife are challenged to adapt.
Short-eared Owls are well camouflaged on the Arctic tundra before the snow falls.
Late snow means that the normally camouflaged Rock Ptarmigan are exposed to potential predators.
With snow a couple of months late, I watched Arctic Foxes that were so exposed on the tundra that they clung to anything white on the tundra, including a piece of styrofoam.
In the fall, groups of juvenile Snowy Owls are unusually vocal and cantankerous before irrupting south with coming snows.
With the first snows, the behavior of the Arctic Foxes changes noticeably. The white foxes that were skittish and wary on the brown tundra suddenly prance with confidence, perhaps knowing they are better hidden on the snow.
Once the snow begins to pile up, most juveniles move southward, leaving the northernmost territories to the adult owls. This juvenile left the next day, the same day Snowy Owls began showing up in the Pacific Northwest.
At the same time the Arctic is frozen and snow covered, birds from California to Washington are in the peak of fall rituals. This Acorn Woodpecker appears to present an offering.
When the cold weather arrives, we are greeted with surprising visitors such as intergrade flickers showing signs of both Red-shafted and Yellow-shafted lineage.
Cards and Calendars
I did not create a calendar for 2013 but I do do have several sets of cards available, including:
Owls of North America, which includes 10 cards of North American Owls for $16 (includes shipping)
Owls of North America II, which includes 8 superior quality cards of North American Owls for $20 (including shipping)
Woodpeckers of North America I, which includes 10 cards for $16 (including shipping)
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for payment instructions.