Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Critters in the Park

Our stop at Point Lobos near Carmel, California, was a rewarding one both photographically and in terms of getting some exercise. We walked around on three of the longer trails around the park and saw lots of wildlife. This shot above is of a very healthy squirrel who had absolutely no fear of humanoids!
In fact, he came up to me and was within a few feet of me for several minutes. I don't know what type of squirrel he/she is, but there were others like it and equally 'friendly' if coming up close to you is a determination of 'friendship' in the squirrel kingdom. It is a serious violation of park policy to feed them, and I don't espouse exposing nature's critters to our mostly unhealthy foodstuffs, so it wasn't even a thought for me to risk getting nabbed by a park official.
But perhaps this little guy has been able to put the touch on others and expected the same from me.
The picture on the right is of another one which Jey-hu caught eating some item found on the ground, not anything given to it by us. We must have spent almost half an hour watching and photographing them. What was most interesting overall however, was watching the numbers of other tourists passing by who didn't even STOP but rushed on past to get to the next outlook on the ocean, apparently never even seeing the wildlife in the bushes beyond the paths they were on.
There were also several small groupings of deer, mostly does and fawns, either grazing or taking a nap in a clearing, but surrounded by fallen trees. Jey-hu was able, with his telephoto lens, to get this shot of a young one relaxing.
I was walking ahead on a path and because I tend to go into 'quiet mode' in these settings, I can walk so that I make minimal noise. I startled a small rabbit who tried to hide in the grass...
"Look, I have a blade of grass in front of me; I cannot be seen." Jey-hu came up behind me without knowing why I was stopped and spoke to me, which caused Mr. (or Ms.) Cottontail to lippity-lop away back into the bushes.
And there were lots of wonderful views of the ocean in turmoil, with all the rich colors of the sea and rocks, which I will share in my next blog.

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