Monday, December 12, 2016

Coming in for a Landing

Canada Goose --  Martin Luther King, Jr. Regional Shoreline, Oakland, CA
Canon EOS Rebel T5i, EF 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6L IS II, f/5.6, 1/2000s, ISO:250
Canada geese a year-round inhabitants in Alameda.  Well, some are, anyway.  The population swells in the winter when the migratory birds are around mingling with the locals.  I don't blame the year-rounders from eschewing the seasonal migrations.  It must be such a hassle.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Wild Turkeys

Wild Turkey -- Pleasanton, CACanon EOS Rebel T5i, EF 55-250mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II, f/5.6, 1/1000s, ISO:6400
Turkeys crack me up.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Tule Elk

Tule Elk -- Point Reyes National Seashore, CA
Canon EOS Rebel T5i, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM, f/5, 1/1600s, ISO:400

I'm not sure if this guy was in the process of sitting down or standing up.  Kind of a funky stance.  It's the intensity in the eye that I like about this shot.

As I recall, this group of elk was pretty close to the trail heading out to Tomales Point.  That's always a fun hike to take in the fall.  The elk are in rut and quite active.

Tule elk are smaller than Roosevelt and Rocky Mountain elk, but with males weighing in at five hundred pounds or so they are still large animals.  I've read that their small size may be due to poor nourishment.  Some people claim tule elk can grow to be nine hundred pounds, meaning they are potentially the same size as the other American breeds of elk.  I haven't seen any that big.

Tule elk are only found in California.  There used to be hundreds of thousands of these animals roaming the wilderness but by the late nineteenth century they had been reduced to a very small number of individuals (a single breeding pair or up to thirty animals depending on the source).  They were discovered by a game warden and Henry Miller, the rancher who owned the land they were found on, protected them.  Today, Point Reyes is struggling to keep the herds numbers in control.  I read they were going to sterilize some of the females but I don't know if that ever happened.

Photo selection inspired by Geogypsy's Foto Friday Fun 192, image #4754.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Pierce Ranch

Pierce Ranch, Point Reyes National Seashore, CA
Pierce Ranch marks the beginning of the hiking trail out to Tomales Point.  It's a dramatic not only because of the location but also for the fact that it runs through a tule elk reserve.  You will definitely see elk on this hike and often they are very close to the trail.  Sometimes, they're even on it.  Coyotes are fairly common as well, and they too are sometimes close or even on the trail. 

Photo selection inspired by Geogypsy's Foto Friday Fun 190, image #2214.