Saturday, September 14, 2013

Mammals of the Summer of 2013

While out birding or atlassing in Manitoba, I am often treated to exciting sightings of mammals and other fauna. This is half the fun of being in the wilderness! This post shares just a few of those encounters from this past summer, part of what made the summer so special.

We start with the obligatory Black Bear. I photographed this individual near Nanuk Lodge on Hudson Bay coast east of York Factory as they walked nonchalantly towards me.
In the very same area as that Black Bear was this beautiful young black Timber Wolf. I encountered this animal three times while atlassing in that area. 
Here are two photos of a black Timber Wolf hunting Canada Goose goslings in the same area. I first spotted their ears sticking up in a slight ravine along the coast so I crept ahead and got into position and waited for the wolf to race out. I didn't manage to get photos of the kill; however, once the wolf had captured a gosling they walked right in front of my hiding spot on a beach ridge allowing me these photos.

Who's looking  at you? (this wolf sneaks around to get a look at me)

Moving a little further north, this Arctic Hare put on a fabulous show for the crew and I near the Churchill Northern Studies Centre (just outside of Churchill, Manitoba).

A little further north yet again, I photographed this Arctic Ground Squirrel just north of the Seal River, the southernmost limit of their distribution.

This young Polar Bear was over-enthusiastically trying to pounce on an Arctic Ground Squirrel without success.
Photographing Polar Bears is one of the great thrills of being in northern Manitoba. Here, a mother and cub stroll across the mudflat near the Seal River Heritage Lodge. 
This male wandered through the fireweed as I was surveying - I obviously had to keep a close eye on him as he strolled by!

A large male, previously hidden in tall grasses, stands up to investigate a noise... can you spell "adrenalin rush?"
... well?

Sorry, time's up!

Usually a good rule of thumb is... let sleeping bears lie!

Damn, you smell good! (female and male interacting)

On second thoughts....

That's a little tastes of some of the summer's magic moments!
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