Tuesday, June 17, 2014

A Beaverkill bestiary.

Early on the first morning of our Memorial Day weekend visit to the Beaverkill Valley I spotted this white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) doe and fawn on the meadow behind the house.
As we were having breakfast, this eastern chipmunk (Tamias striatus) peeked over the back of a bench on the patio.
That evening I looked out a window and saw what may have been the same doe and fawn I had seen in the morning, in a meadow between the house and the road. I went out to the porch and took this photo. I tried to be as quiet and unobtrusive as possible (I was using my 20X zoom at almost full power) but, as you can see, the doe spotted me. A few seconds after I took the photo, she bolted for nearby forest cover.
I walked softly out to near where the deer had been, and saw the fawn cowering in the cover of the tall grass. The following morning the fawn was gone; evidently the doe came to retrieve it under cover of darkness.
Walking around the pond behind the house, I noticed frequent small splashes at the water's edge as I approached. Looking into the pond, I saw what I've tentatively identified as a northern dusky salamander (Desmognathus fuscus).
A little farther along, I saw this tadpole (probably Rana sp.)
Finally, I spotted a full-grown frog, probably either a bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) or green frog (Rana clamitans).

For birds, see my earlier post, "Birds of the Beaverkill".