Midwestern Wanderlog

2016-10-27 – Wonderful Wildlife

It was a gloomy day – not surprising, it’s late October.  Which means it’s almost November.  And I don’t know of a more rainy month than the eleventh month of the year.  Back when I was working at the car wash, we were closed more often – and paychecks were lighter – due to the weather in November than we were any other month of the year.

Sunrise Stats!
First light: 7:12 AM
Sunrise: 7:42 AM
Daylight: 11 hrs, 24 min

The clouds were an interesting color, though.  Almost a maroon, but a very pale shade of it.  I would love to be able to be above the clouds on a day like today.  Where is the sun, how thick are the clouds, what are the contours?  What causes this kind of color?

Getting back to the truck, I was focused on getting home.  The world of sleep was calling, and I wanted my pillow and warm blankets.  I’d put my camera and tripod away and was just sliding into the front seat when I happened to glance up.  I’m fortunate and grateful that he stood there long enough for me to pull out the camera and snap a few shots.

This young fellow is a whitetail deer.  They’re pretty common in this area, though that wasn’t always the case.  My buddy Ivan tells stories about how his dad and uncle had to go way up north for hunting season.  That it was so rare to see a whitetail this far south that when they did the sighting was an event.

These days the whitetail are so plentiful they could be considered a nuisance.  They stand in front of cars on the local highways and county roads, staring at you until you hit them.  No garden is safe from them unless it’s surrounded by a six-foot fence and even then you’re taking your chances.

These guys are the same species as Bambi from the movie.  They’re larger than the mule deer farther west – at least, they are here.  The east coast has whitetail too, but they’re small scrubby-looking things.  I’ve always wondered if the reason for the difference is the available browse.  Here, they get into farmer’s cornfields and soybeans grown on good rich black dirt.  Out east, you can see the difference in the corn; not as tall, the ears are smaller, the green of the leaves isn’t as intense.  So it would make sense for the deer to look different, too.

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