Mostly Antlers and Nubs, 11-26-19

Start Time: 7:00 am
Start Temperature: 36ºF
End Temperature: 51º F
Weather: Overcast; rain pending; some ground fog
Total Hours in the field (includes travel time): 3.25 hours
Miles Walked: 2.5
Number of Individual Species Today: 20

Rio Grande Wild Turkeys, Meleagris gallopavo intermedia, males

It was a very chilly 36º this morning when I headed out to the Effie Yeaw Nature Preserve for my regular volunteer trail walking gig.  I was ahead of the rain for my entire walk, but the heavier rain clouds were starting to move in just as I left. 

I love this time of year for several reasons, and one is because the “big boys” are out in nature right now in their full regalia… and some of the yearlings are just starting to get their “nubs.”  Because the adult bucks are in rut right now, too, they’re all walking around in their manly-man scent. You can smell them before you see them: that animal hide and musk scent. I love it.

Columbian Black-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus hemionus columbianus. 4-Point buck approaching and crossing the trail in front of me.

I also saw quite a few does and some fawns, including some young boys who were just starting to get their nubs or were in their first-year spikes, but still hanging out with mom and their siblings. Among the big bucks, I didn’t see the 5-pointer today, but I did see two handsome 4-pointers.

Columbian Black-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus hemionus columbianus . A more “blonde” 4-pointer.

CLICK HERE for the full album of photos.

And the deer dominated the day for photo-taking.  There wasn’t much else showing itself, and I didn’t see any bees in or around the “bee tree” (probably because it was still so cold, and “winter is coming”.) I walked for about 2½ hours and then headed out.

Species List:

  1. Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus
  2. Black Phoebe, Sayornis nigricans
  3. Blue Oak, Quercus douglasii
  4. California Scrub Jay, Aphelocoma californica
  5. California Towhee, Melozone crissalis
  6. Columbian Black-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus hemionus columbianus
  7. Coyote Brush, Baccharis pilularis
  8. Coyote, Canis latrans [tracks and scat]
  9. Eastern Fox Squirrel, Sciurus niger
  10. Golden Crowned Sparrow, Zonotrichia atricapilla
  11. Interior Live Oak, Quercus wislizeni
  12. Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura
  13. Northern Flicker, Colaptes auratus
  14. Nuttall’s Woodpecker, Picoides nuttallii [heard]
  15. Oak Titmouse, Baeolophus inornatus
  16. Rio Grande Wild Turkey, Meleagris gallopavo intermedia
  17. Spotted Towhee, Pipilo maculatus
  18. Valley Oak, Quercus lobata
  19. Western Fence Lizard, Blue Belly, Sceloporus occidentalis [tracks]
  20. White-Breasted Nuthatch, Sitta carolinensis [heard]