Uprooted Magnolia

Elk Week: Bruisers

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 10, 2011

These two bulls are the favorites. The heavies.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This guy posed beautifully in the sunshine by the sunflowers.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We woke this one up from a nap and sat with him for a while.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

He checked things out then started grazing.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This image feels like the cover of a magazine along with the one on Thursday.

I’m not a hunting woman, at least not with a gun. I hunt with a camera. But if you are in the market for one of these bruisers, you can book a hunt with Edwards Outfitting and see these guys for yourself.
Well, that’s it for Elk Week.  I hope you’ve enjoyed looking at these magnificent creatures. The last time I photographed them, they were in the velvet. This time, their antlers were shiny and smooth with silver-tines. We had an incredible time watching them play in the mud, run through the sunflowers, and we even witnessed a couple fights. Yikes.
Thanks Rich Edwards for a fabulous getaway!


Elk Week: Babyface

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 9, 2011

As the sun went down, the young one made his appearance.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

He’s got a sweet  face and his coat is spotless.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

His rack ain’t half bad either. Silver-tines and all.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We woke him up as the sun was rising. He rubbed the sleep out of his eyes and gave us a pose before he started grazing.
The “big bruiser” is coming up tomorrow and he will close out Elk Week for us. I’ll also give you the information on where to find these fellas. See you tomorrow!


Elk Week: A Favorite

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 8, 2011

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Once we left the mud pit and passed by the sunflower field, this gentleman ran right in front of us and stopped at this tree. I guess he felt the need to strike a pose because it can’t get any prettier than this.  This is Patrick’s favorite shot from the weekend. Not necessarily his favorite bull, but favorite shot.

Stay tuned for Babyface. He will make his grand appearance tomorrow.  Until then, keep your powder dry!


Elk Week: Wallowing in the Mud

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 7, 2011

A nice way to cool off during these hot temperatures is to….well…

©Leah Yetter Photographer

wallow in a mud hole of course!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Just splash it on your belly.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

And lay down in it so that you get covered from head to toe.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Make sure, though, that it tastes good enough to be rolling around in.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Do some stretches to strengthen your neck muscles and scratch that itch.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Then make your way to the sunshine to dry off.

If you follow these easy steps, you’ll find it’s a surefire way to beat the late summer heat.


Elk Week: Bugling for Sunflowers

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 6, 2011

Spent some time with several bull elk,

©Leah Yetter Photographer

in a sunflower field,

©Leah Yetter Photographer

under the Nebraska setting sun.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We had about 24 hours of free time this weekend so Patrick and I ran away to Nebraska to listen to the bugling elk after they wallowed in the mud pits and shined up their antlers in the brush.

I have more photos to show you of these creatures  but I thought I’d give you a tease before sharing the others.  We’ll call this Elk Week.

Hope you had a nice and relaxing weekend!


Honk Honk

Posted in Local, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on August 5, 2011

I’m in town today working at the gallery and I’ve got the doors open to let the cool Wyoming breeze through. Diesel trucks are growling and honking as they pass by on their way to the Platte County Fair. There is a lot going on in town this weekend and I hope we have some gallery visitors.

Have a great weekend folks!
♥Leah


Baby Turkeys do a Snake Dance

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on August 3, 2011

Definition for Conga Line: snake dance; a group progression in a single-file serpentine path.
Do not worry, this is not a gruesome tale.(as the title may make it sound)

Yesterday I showed you where the deer and the antelope play. Today I will show you baby turkeys! While I was focused on the deer, I heard quiet clucking. I looked in the patch of tall grass ahead of me and saw several hens.

Occasionally I would see little heads peek up and run to momma. The grass was too tall to get a good view of them but I patiently waited to see where they were going to step to next.

Then one came out in a small clearing.

I looked out onto the road and saw another hen with her 2 babies.

I looked back to the clearing in the tall grass and saw a couple more little ones. This time showing off for the camera and they were starting to file into a single line. They haven’t quite grown into their feathers have they!

This is probably my favorite shot of the baby turkeys by far. I love the conga line across the road. “Look at me Mom!”
I counted 7 baby turkeys in all. Lately, I’ve only spotted them in smaller groups so I was happy to see this many at one time.
 


where the deer and the antelope play

Posted in Nature, Photography, The Ranch, Wildlife by leahyetter on August 2, 2011

In the freshly cut meadow, the wildlife can’t hide as well.

While driving into the ranch a couple evenings ago I came upon deer, antelope, and turkeys all grazing in the meadow together.

It was a beautiful sight and I noticed a lot of them hanging out near the sprinkler probably to keep cool. We’re watering it for the second cutting for horse hay.

Does and bucks were all together with antelope grazing without a care in the world.

But the mommas were on the lookout and very cautious. They stayed close to the brush for a quick hop to their hiding place if need be.


Young Horned Owl

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on July 19, 2011

This young guy was perched on a limb in the irrigation ditch.

He wasn’t fishing, he was cooling off. We’ve had some pretty warm temperatures here and being near the rushing water is cool and refreshing.


Then he flew from the ditch to a tree right by my side of the truck. I’m sure we were bugging him but I didn’t care, this was the closest I’ve been to an owl in the daylight. I love how his is crouching back kind of like a kitty cat ready to pounce on a mouse.

Then he spread his wings and took off. He had better things to do and who was I to stop him from finding his next meal.


Sandhill Cranes

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on July 18, 2011

I’ve seen the Sandhill Crane flying high above the ranch but I haven’t been able to capture them on the ground.

Sandhill Crane 1

But one day last week, I finally saw a couple grounded and hunting.

Sandhill Crane 2

In a neighbor’s hay meadow, they were filling up grasshoppers.

Sandhill Crane 3

I hope they visit again. I’d like to have more time photographing them since we were rushed this particular day.
Happy Monday everyone!


 

Young Survivors

Posted in Nature, Photography, Uncategorized, Wildlife by leahyetter on July 11, 2011

These images are bittersweet to me. It’s a wonderful sight to see when coming home, the mother hens with babies.

But it’s also sad to see 3 hens and only 2 chicks. That means their predators were well fed before the little ones learned to fly. These two have a good chance of making it though. I’ve seen them take off and fly away quickly.

They are brave coming out onto the road and bridge.

But the little one wasn’t brave enough to fly across the river like the hen perched on the side of the bridge. She took off across right after I shot this image while the others disappeared into the tall grass.


Deep in the Forest

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on June 13, 2011

Still working on my Seasons project, we hiked into an area I hadn’t explored yet. And I could swear I saw Sleeping Beauty in the distance.  This forest was absolutely gorgeous like how I imagined as a kid when mom read me fairy tales. But since neither one of us can claim to be Prince Charming, we didn’t go wake her.

The trails were made of wildflowers and green grass.

We passed probably a hundred cocoons waiting for the right moment to release the butterflies.

We sat right here waiting for something that Patrick saw in the distance. I couldn’t believe what I saw.

Two bull Elk were leaving the canyon to climb higher. We were probably 40 feet from them. This is the closest I’ve ever been to Elk in the wild. Their antlers are just now getting started, still in the velvet. We were so close we could see bugs flying around them. It was breathtaking.

But they weren’t as thrilled with seeing us. This one performed a very rude gesture before turning and running up the next hill.

Aside from that, this evening hike turned out to be a very successful shoot.


Harmony

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on March 18, 2011

On a hike after checking the cattle, I heard a gobble in the distance. I followed the sound across the river and through a clearing, I saw them.

I followed, trying not to spook them. They led me through another clearing and then then I saw more.

But this time I saw turkeys and deer. They saw me too but nobody ran. They just stared me down.

This yearling and his turkey friends grazed without even noticing me.

Whoops, turkey crossing.

Harmony. Tranquility. Peace. Ahhh early spring.


The Dark-eyed Junco

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on March 10, 2011

While Patrick was taking shoes off a few of the horses, I was birdwatching by the barn. Since we are mostly covered in snow, I wondered what these little guys were eating.

Dark-eyed Junco’s are birds of the ground. Just look at this chubby guy.

He spotted something on the ground. What you may ask?

Ahhhh, so it seems they are helping the horses eat their grain. And it looks to me like they get a lot of grub.

They fluttered around and were not too concerned with me hanging close by.
I’ve never been a huge fan of birds. I had a bad experience back east when Starlings ripped the backyard light off the exterior of my house and started nesting in my walls. My patio was covered in droppings and they drove the kitty and me crazy. I had to have them excavated and after that, I swore I would never have bird feeders. But out here, I’ve seen so many beauties that I may have to put out a feeder and see who stops by.


 

Hunted

Posted in Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on March 8, 2011

A couple days after my morning with the Bald and Beautiful (thanks Mary!), I took a walk down by the river. It’s so peaceful there and I was looking for signs of spring. I picked up an antler shed and as I walked down down the river bank, I saw a little bit of green grass peeking though. Then I saw a feather. And then another, and then more floating among twigs in the river.

I think it is safe to say that the eagle was successful in his hunt.

I’d say he got a duck but I’m not positive. Like Melissa said in the comments yesterday, “It’s easy to imagine it tearing a small mammal apart looking at those talons (and cold eyes)!”
It’s so true. So much for peace by the river. But hey, that’s nature for ya.


Eagle by the Bridge

Posted in Nature, Photography, The Ranch, Wildlife by leahyetter on March 7, 2011

There was a light snow falling last Friday morning and I was sitting at my desk with a warm cup of coffee when Patrick called. He said to jump on the four wheeler and head down to the bridge with my camera. An eagle has been perched there since the crack of dawn he said. I figured he’d be gone before I could get on the 5 layers of clothing required for riding in the snow but to my surprise, he was still there. He took flight not long after I arrived.

He landed on a limb way down the river. Can you see him in the distance there?

But I captured this image before he took flight.

I think out of all my shots while out here in the wild west, I am most proud of this portrait above and of the one in flight. Just look at his eyes. The sharp talons. And that beak. I had a hard time focusing because the snow was coming down pretty fast but I persisted. And he was hunting. Turning his head all around waiting for his next meal to come along. It was a difficult shoot and I was so happy to come home with these results.
I hope you like them too.


Big Horn Sheep

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on January 26, 2011

One creature out here that I hope to get really close to one day is the big horn sheep.

Patrick spotted these guys on our drive through the canyon.

That’s a young ram(male) at the top and a ewe(female) at the bottom of the image above.

They were staring me down, taunting me to climb up there to them. I do hope to get up close someday.

But they are sheep and are most of the time too high up on the side of a mountain for my taste. I was just fortunate to have them in the sunlight here.


Quick Visit with Buffalo

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on January 25, 2011

We love our long drives through the Sybille Creek Canyon and are always on the lookout for wildlife. Sometimes all we see is a big buck in the distance, the occasional coyote,  or crows and vultures. The Game and Fish is along the road and they are home to a few buffalo. I’ve never stopped for them before but this day I was feeling it. I jumped out of the truck into ankle deep snow and was able to capture this image with the first click.

GF Buffalo 1

Then the biggest guy wasn’t thrilled with me being there and he approached me with a deep growl. He started rubbing and throwing himself into the fence that was separating us. Thank goodness for that fence.

GF Buffalo 2

And so I moved on.
With every photo shoot, there is always a blooper. Whether they blinked or looked away suddenly.

GF Buffalo 3

This guy hoped to pick a winner.


Sweet Blinks

Posted in Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on January 24, 2011

Even with the large amount of cattle grazing the meadows (and in our front yard I might add), the deer still have plenty to chew on.

Blink of Delight

And they love it. Just look at the sweet delight on this yearlings face while chewing his cud.

I Surprised Her

I was spotted by one but Blinkie continued with his meal.

Blinking Buck

It is no different for the bucks, they love passing through and grabbing a bite too.

The deer seek refuge here from the mountain lions in the hills. They feel safe and so far we haven’t had problems with them hanging around. BUT, I haven’t started my garden and I have a feeling I will be investing in a lot of netting and have a dog housed near the veggies.


Canadian Geese

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on January 21, 2011

Yesterday was a cold. Blowing snow at 65 mph. My cameras got soaked when I step outside.

But 3 days ago, it was sunny with beautiful blue and violet skies. So I was able to capture these geese in a pond of melted snow in an orchard on the way to town.