Mule Deer Family Fair Weather Friends

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Fair Weather Friends and Visitors
Mule Deer
A baby Mule deer keeps his eye on me
Mule Deer return
In early May the last patches of snow melted in my side yard. The powerful sun quickly warmed the frozen ground. Within two weeks small green shoots sprouted from the freshly exposed earth. Springtime flowers and fresh, green grass lured the Mule Deer back to the high mountains and Spruce forest were they normally spend their summers. The baby deer had long wobbly legs and thin, pointed heads. Their light tan fur was mixed with spots of white and had a ruffled appearance. Full grown adult Mule deer, as pictured in the background of the above photo, have a darker coat that is trimmed with black and is smoothly groomed.
Springtime Flowers
Fresh meadow flowers herald the coming of spring
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My home is surrounded my mature Spruce and Aspen trees. Many of the Spruce trees are over 100 years old and quite large. Some are 3 to 4 feet in diameter and 70 to 100 feet tall. Interspersed amongst the big trees are open patches of meadow where grass, flowers and small bushes thrive. In the early spring, before the grass has a chance to grow tall, many flowers push aside last years dried stalks and bloom freely in the sun drenched meadow. The flowers draw birds and small animals like rabbits, squirrels and chipmunks. Mule deer sleep in the meadows at night. An early morning walk often reveals the flattened grass where they peacefully slumbered. Renewal
Arrowhead blooms anew
Sage Breathtaking Beauty
Sagebrush sprouts along my driveway Pale yellow blooms push above dried grass
Spotted Grouse
Spotted Grouse - front
Just after sunset a male Spotted Grouse pranced around my driveway and front yard. He would beat his wings, fan out his tail and expand his red and white feathered cheeks to attract a female. He must have gotten lucky because after a few nights his impressive dance ceased. Grouse Fantail
Spotted Grouse - rear
Mule Deer Mom Seedlings
Mule Deer - ever alert Summer flowers start indoors too
While the Mule Deer celebrated spring by lunching on my lawn I greeted the longer days by planting seeds. Tomatoes, Yellow Squash, Zucchini, Sunflowers, Daisies, Poppies, Black-eyed Susans and more graced my kitchen window box. I hung a basket of Pansies in the greenhouse because the nights are still cold. The danger of frost remains until June 15th.
Three weeks later I planted the 6 inch tall vegetables in the greenhouse. Now, two weeks later, they have tiny buds which should flower any day. My flower seedlings are growing more slowly but showing steady progress.
Green House Pansies
Pansies bloom in the greenhouse
Yellow Finch
Yellow Finch
Chickadees arrived in early March
Yellow Finch
Chipmunk filling his cheeks with seeds
Warm spring weather brought many furry and feathered visitors to my home in the woods. The Chickadees arrived in early March and built a nest in a Spruce tree by the propane tanks. A flock of Finches followed in mid April. The Chipmunks awoke from their winter's sleep in April. They quickly clean up the bird seed that falls from the feeders. Magpies, Bluebirds, Red Tailed Hawks and a Horned Owl have all stopped by for a visit as well.
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