Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Can You Tell What It Is Yet?

This trip has been rich pickings for wildlife spotting although my camera shots are not up to scratch.  So, I'll share what we've been privileged enough to see using some library photos taken with men/women with much bigger lenses and more patience than myself.

Our first sighting shortly after taking a right from the main road onto the route to Moonlight Basin ski resort was a flock of Bighorn Sheep including mamas with their babies - aaaaaah!  These are really wild beasties not like their mostly white cousins that litter the hills near our home.

One of this guy's relatives just has to be my favourite mammal that we've spotted so far on the trip.  An ermine was running around in the snow below the Iron Horse chairlift at Moonlight Basin. He's a stoat whose usual brownish coat has turned almost pure white for the  winter.  Our one had a natty black tip to his long tail!

On our drive down to Yellowstone we saw our first of many elk. This is one large deer! On our last trip here one followed us as we were cross country skied back to our accommodation. This guy is no cute shy retiring Bambi. He's a bruiser whose close presence caused my heart to race more than just a little.

The only dog family creature spotted so far is the coyote, although not in close proximity likes this fine chappie.   I'd love to  see a wolf  but  might have to be as  patient as I've been with the common old garden moose, whose eluded me for the entire fifteen years that we've been visiting the US.

And one bald eagle from Mr Lovelygrey, a man with more sophisticated equipment than my own!  He was spotted on the way into the National Park on our snowcoach ride perched atop a tree next to the Madison River.  Now we definitely don't get these in Devon!

More ornithology!  A belted kingfisher again seen perched by the side of the Madison River.  He's bigger than his English counterpart which is why I didn't have any trouble spotting him.  His European friend is also an animal that been successfully hiding from me for my entire life.

Again one of Mr Lovelygrey's.  These are Trumpeter Swans.  Americans seem to be very excited to see these birds but us Brits in our ignorance can't really see what the fuss is about.  After all, a swan is a swan is a swan.  Isn't it?

These guys are everywhere here, blocking our way on our cross country ski outing so we had to make a detour!  Could this be another photo from a chap with a big lens?  No, this is Louis' shot taken from the snowcoach on his own camera.  We've resisted the expensive children's offerings with their low resolution and instead equipped him with an old mobile phone.  So, David Bailey, eat your heart out!

And finally dig this.  There are flies called ephydrida brucei living in hot water in the geyser basins feeding off the algal blooms.  Nothing special to look at but perhaps the most amazing creatures here.


  1. Lucky you....sounds amazing! xxx

  2. This is the kind of wildlife you only see in a book, it must be fantastic to see them for real. Looks like you are having a great time.