Change is in the Air - UPDATE October 28, 2023
This morning, the beaver lodge stood out brightly with its first dusting of snow of this fall. Could the snow be a factor in Lucky and Holly settling into their den for the night, or was it just that they found a better way to jointly share the limited space in the den?
A big change in the last few days is the barren look of the forests with nearly all the leaves suddenly down. Tamaracks (a.k.a. Larches (Larix laricina) are now the main color with their yellow needles.
Some things stayed the same. The intermittent snow showers of yesterday did not deter the usual visit by 3-year-old Fletcher in the dark of night or the red fox visits both day and night.
A big change here is the feeding spots being overwhelmed by the flock of blue jays that has grown to fourteen (7 shown in the picture). With so many blue jays, I didn’t realize at first that another flock had also grown. When the sun was going down and the blue jays left, I realized that our flock of chickadees had suddenly grown from two or three to at least a dozen that had waited unnoticed in the trees until their competition left and they could swarm in fast to gather energy for overnight. Today, with our feeding sites expanded for the chickadees to find, they still had to compete with the occasional woodpecker like this male hairy woodpecker that is looking alert as a female (his mate?) flew in to feed nearby.
In the next few days, we’ll see if Lucky and Holly will tuck in together for the winter and how long Fletcher will continue his visits.
Thank you for all you do,
Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center