Bucky, Questions - UPDATE March 1, 2018

At 3:30 PM, Bucky was here eating after a 5-day absence. I eased out the door with the live-trap. Barred Owl from 2002Barred Owl from 2002Bucky went up a tree and watched as I put it at the base of the tree. No other squirrels were around. I thought he would come back down as he has done before. Then several squirrels showed up. Bucky disappeared. I didn’t see him come down, so he might have jumped to the next tree like other squirrels often do. I hoped he’d show again toward sundown after the other squirrels leave. Maybe tomorrow now that he’s back.

Barred Owl 3/18Barred OwlAnother highlight of the day came at sundown. A barred owl landed at 5:40 PM and searched the ground with its eyes. Through the window, it saw me grab binoculars and looked. Then it was back looking for mice or squirrels, etc. I eased partway out the door to snap a picture. It looked and went back to searching the ground. It seemed familiar. Back in July 2002, a barred owl sat almost in the same place. I’d heard it say, Whoooo, descending in pitch. It was dark. I set up a tripod, put the long lens on it, and tried to sound like the owl. Immediately, it flew out of the dark to a branch on that tree and looked at the camera. Click. The picture today was not as good against the bright sky, but it brought back a good memory.

Lily Fans are sharp, and they ask hard questions. Lily Moderators sent 12 questions from Lily Fans. I’ll start with 3 easy ones and one I don’t know.

  1. Can you confirm that Lucky was castrated and didn’t have a vasectomy? (Note the 12/14/16 update says the latter).
    Answer: I misspoke in that update. I know he was castrated. Our goal was to remove the testosterone that we believed was driving him to attack Ted. But they continued to argue through Ted’s fence and we’ve kept them separated ever since.

  2. Do you think you will need to spay Holly and or Tasha in the future?
    Answer: I suspect not. Lucky and Ted are both safe—Lucky surgically, and Ted by age and disposition.

  3. Am I familiar with Joe Hutto who joined with turkeys and mule deer to successfully do studies on them?
    Answer: I’m just learning about him. I missed the films on PBS but recently bought his book “Touching the Wild.” I was especially interested in his experiences with mule deer after I walked with white-tailed deer during 1977-1980, but I haven’t had a chance to get back to his book. He is a terrific writer.

  4. Do you know if mink have a collapsible rib cage?
    Answer: I remember being surprised when a mink squeezed down between the boards on the front deck here some time ago. Maybe that’s how it did it, but I couldn’t find anything on Google that specifically said they have that. I’d never heard of it for mink and have to say I don’t know. Would be interesting to know.

Hoping for good luck with Bucky tomorrow.

Thank you for all you do.

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