Ted, Quill, Fern, Pine Marten, Raven - UPDATE October 28, 2017

Ted is immersed in straw and looks ready for a long rest.Ted in ChaletTed in Chalet Den

A Lily Fan wondered if the nighttime visitor at the WRI could be Quill this late in the year like he did last year. I sent this picture to the person who knows him best. She said yes. I compared it with pictures of Quill from last year. Yes. The top of the muzzle is darker, but that can change with the light. QuillQuillEverything about the pattern of black on the side of his face, the eyebrow patches, and the upturned nose fits. So does his behavior. He looked at me through the window and was kind of okay. I stepped out and he ran, leaving on the same path as last year. I wanted to get a weight. Maybe we will yet. Last year, he didn’t leave until 7 minutes after midnight on the early morning of November 18.

I got an excited email about a sighting of 5-year-old Fern today. We’ll see her with cubs in the spring. Lily Fans remember seeing her born to Jewel on January 22, 2012.

Raven and deerRaven and deerThe female pine marten put in a quick appearance today for a snack. I was ready for her after her quick visit yesterday with no reward. I like to see her every day. She put a piece of beef fat in her mouth and tried to bite a second one, but couldn’t. She arranged them so she could pick both up overlapping a bit. She then turned and looked at me, maybe proud or maybe just saying hi. Then she ignored me again.

Ravens are the wariest birds I know here at the research cabin. In Ely, they let a person walk by or drive by closely. Along highways, scavenging ravens and especially crows see cars approaching and walk to the shoulder and let the vehicle whiz by without the bird flying. Here, they are very wary. Pine Marten FemalePine marten femaleA pair spied the pine marten’s beef fat and flew close for a look, but one look at me at my desk put them in fast flight away. But they are not so wary of deer. One of them checked out the blocks of date mash flying very close to a dining deer. The deer closed one eye as the raven flew by—was it winking at the raven or worried about something so near moving fast?

In last night’s update, I got caught. A sharp Lily Fan noted my error. What I called a juvenile white-crowned sparrow was really an American tree sparrow. I’m glad to be surrounded by Lily Fans. Surrounding myself with smart people is what made the Bear Center what it is, which reminds me that GiveMN is coming up. The big day starts at 12:01 AM on November 16.

Thank you for all you do.

Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center