Category Archives: Wildlife

Oh deer

We are currently in the season for outdoor decorations, and one of the more popular choices for decorating is deer.   Technically, I suppose that people are thinking ‘reindeer’, with sort of North Pole connotations.   But it’s easier to go with generic deer as a sign of the season.

If you are wanting to have outdoor lights anyway, why not a lighted deer?

This family of log deer are certainly cute and crafty, as well as being environmentally friendly.

Hey, wait a minute.   That’s not even a deer, it’s just a dog with an antler tied to his head (if you want to be a Grinch about it).

Well now we’re getting completely ridiculous, besides being rather abstract.   Nothing says festive like Rudolph the red-nosed car.   Really?

This is more like it, the real thing (although you can tell from the state of his antlers that I took this picture in the spring).   After spending the summer wherever they disappear off to, the local deer are back in the neighborhood.   And making a festive statement just by being themselves.

Oh deer

Well there I was having another art day and I had ended up at a rather swanky hotel.   The hotel was having a plein air day with a number of their artists who show at the gallery out and about painting the scenery at the hotel.   As I was leaving I stepped out of the front entrance and saw her.

What you can’t see in the picture is that she is quite near the front portico, with lots of valets and doormen standing around.   There were a few tourists milling about as well.   She calmly  was trimming the shrubbery and enjoying the tender freshly planted flowers that come from the hotel’s own greenhouse.

And after a hearty meal like that one needs a bit of a lie down.

And perhaps a little scritch to make one’s self completely comfortable.

And if one cared to memorialize the day, and one had several thousand dollars just rattling around in one’s pocket, one could purchase something like this bronze deer, available to buy right there in the hotel gallery.   Or perhaps some other wildlife art to remember encountering  the fauna of Colorado right outside the fancy hotel lobby.


As my house is near a park/open space, there are a lot of deer that wander through the neighborhood enjoying the landscaping and hanging out.   I have named a number of them, although I am not sure if they recognize their names.  🙂   Some I see only occasionally, and others I see more frequently.   And these ones are my favorites, although I do love them all.

This is Rosa, who is the friendliest of the bunch.  She came right up to me the other day when I was out fetching the newspaper.   She just seems to like people.  She had a reddish ear, so I decided her name must be Rosa.

This is Tamara, and she is quite easily spotted.   She stopped by without her youngster for once (he must have been off learning how to be a stag).   She has been coming by for the past three years at least.   I’m not sure how she injured her leg, my veterinarian friend though that she might have been struck by a car.   Her full name is Tamara the lame, but she still gets around and enjoys a full life.

This stag is the newest deer to be hanging around the house.  From the shape of his antlers, I have decided that he must be Albert’s grandson (Albert used to sleep under the deck some years ago).   He had obviously been fighting and lost an antler.  He also has an injury to his right hock.  I called the Department of Wildlife to see if they could patch him up, but they only euthanize injured animals (not an option).   However, they did say that he could survive with only three legs, and that there are a number of three legged deer wandering about town.  So I do make sure that he has plenty of water, and I am hoping that he makes a recovery as he seems to be rather nice for a stag.

My friend’s great-grandson stopped by one day and was excited to  see the “cows”, so now he expects to see them every time.  But they are on their own schedule, and I feel fortunate when I get a glimpse of them.


I think that my love of dinosaurs must have started before I could even read.   My big brother discovered the topic first, and I always tried to do everything that he did.  He made little books about his favorites (or perhaps it was just the ones that he read about.  I’m sure he liked them all).   I suspect that all children are fascinated by dinosaurs (at least before Barney came along and ruined it for the others), because they were gigantic and now they are all gone, disappeared off the face of the earth. 🙁

Leaping lizards!  I even signed the petition to keep Dippy the diplodocus in place at the Natural History Museum, but it did no good (he’s gone on tour for now and was replaced by a whale,  a mammal of all things).  The age of dinosaurs is over, I guess.  However, they still have a bit of things to entertain dinosaur lovers like myself.

Of course artists renditions of dino life are de rigeur, because we can only infer what they looked like and what they were up to.

And the newest thing to make dinos come to life are animatronic dinosaurs, like T-Rex here.   He was quite popular and scads of people took selfies with him (including me!).

These animatronic Deinonochus, a species made popular in the Jurassic Park movies, are simultaneously adorable and quite scary.

All of this makes a skeleton seem rather ordinary.   It’s hard to appreciate the time and love required to find the bones in the first place, pry the bones from solid rock in the lab, replace the missing bones with what was probably there, and assemble it together again.

Then there is this newspaper, which was delivered to my house courtesy of a local church.

While I can’t agree with a single one of their conclusions (being largely fact free), it did have some rather nice pictures of my favorite creatures. 😉


More of the same

It’s sometimes hard to say when the subject of a post is done.   And I find myself looking at new things and thinking that they could be a part of a previous post.   So here are some additions,

This lovely candidate for the trees post, serves as a shady bower to protect those persons waiting for the bus.   From the hot New Mexico sun in Santa Fe.

This tree however is a lonely bit of art, positioned on a sidewalk where few travel by foot.   It has metal birds perched on the branches, while a real hawk circles above.

I had promised the previous piece of art that I made to a friend.   But since it did win a ribbon, I found that I could not let it go.   So instead I decided that there was nothing for it but to make another one.   This time I sort of knew what I was doing, and I think that this one has better contrast between the mane and the face.  I whipped out the finished piece the day before my friend’s auction to raise money to help tigers in Thailand.  It wasn’t going to sell for very much, so I bought it back, and now I have two lion quilts.   (And I made a donation to help the tigers too.)

These are some rather unusual birds about town, from right in my neighborhood.   I have no idea what these wild turkeys were thinking as they strolled about, blabbering away in turkey talk.  But they were the first of their kind I had ever seen nearby, looking for place to hide before Thanksgiving no doubt.


It is always nice to come home after being away.   Home is familiar and comfortable, just the way one likes.   And we have the many sayings that reflect this “there’s no place like home” or “home is where the dog is”, etc. etc.  My house is not only home to me, but there are a few others that share this address, although they do not get much in the way of mail.

A Pine Siskin (a sort of sparrow with a bright  red head) decided that right by my front door is a great place to put a nest and raise a family. The spot is sheltered from the sun and rain.  I usually go out the garage door, and that is okay with this bird.   But the siskin gets vexed when I peep out the window to see what it’s up to, so I try not to do this.

Out in the back yard, the ‘esquilos perversos’ or evil squirrels have made themselves at home.   They need to enjoy it now, because the hot tub is going away this summer, so they had better load up their tiny furniture and move.

This hole doesn’t look like much, but I’m pretty sure that it has a comfortable lining of soft dried grass and fur (I did watch her constructing this).

And this is the architect of said hole, the bunny former know as Pete. Because the bunny hides the entrance whenever she leaves, I suspect that there is a baby bunny living in there as well.   None of them pay rent, but they all make this home a better place to live (well maybe not the squirrels).


The gang

I think that Rosa has become the matriarch of the neighborhood herd.  She is certainly the friendliest and least fearful of the local deer.  That is Adele standing in the background, she is a little skittish and is ready to bolt at the slightest thing.

Adele does have a sweet face to go along with her shy disposition.


Tamara (the lame) used to be the matriarch of the group.  But she has a crooked leg, so she is just not as swift as the other bunch.  She has been hanging around for a couple of years, so I know she is older than the other does.

This is one of the youngsters of the group.  I call her the angry deer because of the eyebrows, but she’s not really angry.  She’s the oldest of the youngsters, I think and the offspring of Tamara.   She’s medium skittish, but always glad to see me.

This was the view out my front window one day last week.  The herd makes the best sort of lawn ornaments!


Lounging about

I have always thought that the deer in my neighborhood have a rather sweet deal.   There’s not a lot of traffic (once they are on this side of the Interstate [motorway]).  There’s lots of delicious landscaping to eat.   And they can stroll down to the creek for a drink.   But then I saw these deer, and thought that they definitely have the best spot in town.

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They look so graceful and contented just lounging about.

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And why not?  They are lounging about on the premier estate in town.  Formerly owned by the founder of a luxury hotel, these grounds are part of the foundation that he endowed.   These deer live in splendor in a very exclusive and desirable neighborhood.

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He’s not really angry about anything (except perhaps the papparrazi), it’s just the way his eyebrows look.

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And here are some of his harem.  They don’t have to go to the creek for a drink when there is this lovely fountain for them.  It’s all pretty posh.   But when I woke up this morning, Bob the Stag was resting on my tiny front lawn, so perhaps my house is a desirable address too.


It all started with “Tales of Peter Rabbit”.    Yes the lovely story of the misadventures of this mischievous young rabbit was the start of a love affair with the family Leporidae.   And Easter is their holiday, starting with their chocolate representatives who bring us both hard boiled and candy eggs.   Who wouldn’t like such a splendid species (other than gardeners, farmers,  Australians, Elmer Fudd, etc.)

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Here’s my copy of the story, it’s not actually the one I originally read, I’m sure that was a library book.    Accompanied by my porcelain rabbit that I bought when I worked in a toy store about 30 years ago.   I had a Peter Rabbit, but my last dog decided it was too tempting  a treat to go untasted.

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Here’s my newest rabbit, it is a “velveteen rabbit” from the story of the same name.   It is actually some sort of plush, but that is a minor quibbling detail.   Next to it is an Indian rabbit, made out of a Pendleton blanket, I bought this at March Pow-Wow some years ago.

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This bunny belonged to M, and he got it when he was a small child and first came to America, so that would make it close to 60 years old.

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These are my new bunny salt and pepper shakers.   It’s not anything I needed, but they were too adorable to resist (note to self:  you must try harder to resist things).

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Here is one of the actual bunnies that lives down by the mailbox.   I took this picture the other day as Miss P barked madly at her.   Today we are having a spring blizzard, so I expect that they are all snug in their rabbit holes, eating blackberries and cream like the siblings of Peter Rabbit.   Poor Peter, he had to go to bed without this treat.


AirBnB or is it DeerBnB?

Well the neighborhood deer have gotten pretty comfortable with hanging out.   They are part of the herd of God’s cattle, and they mostly go wherever the mood (or food) takes them.   Sometimes I don’t see them for weeks, which makes them the perfect sort of pet (unlike Miss P who is constantly seeing one or another of her vets).

This week I have had a lot of visitors, and they made themselves right at home.

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This fellow had lost a fight, he had only one horn, and no harem.   Maybe next year.

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This one is a fellow bachelor, they were no doubt relaxing together and talking about sports.

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The ladies were standing, but the young buck (I think he’s a buck because he has antler buds) was laying down.   Maybe it’s a guy thing.

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Yes, it is definitely a guy thing.   Here’s yet another buck just relaxing on the lawn.   My lawn is the perfect place to survey their domain and keep an eye out for predators, just in case.   And the front window is the perfect place to survey these deer. (And they’re not even bothered by Miss P madly barking at them from inside the house.)