Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Quabbin Black Bear

My wildlife camera captured this black bear walking across a rocky outcropping near Quabbin.

Do you think it's the same bear as this one, captured a few hundred yards away, earlier this year?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Bobcat kittens playing

These two bobcat kittens were filmed play-fighting on a rocky outcrop near Quabbin Reservoir earlier this summer.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Witch hazel

Yesterday morning the fall blossoms of common witch hazel captured the light and my eyes. Fall blooming is quite rare among temperate forest plants, and Hamamelis virginiana probably evolved this unusual strategy to avoid competition for pollinators with its close relative, Ozark witch hazel, H. vernalis. Nonetheless, reproductive success of H. virginiana is quite low. Check out my blog to read more about this, and see more photos of flowers and fruit capsules.


Predators and Prey at Quabbin

A recent check of a wildlife camera near Quabbin Reservoir revealed
these video clips of a showshoe hare and several bobcats sharing the
same game trail.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Another Beat-Up Autumn Olive

I found my own mangled autumn olive bush while hiking today.  Though it was exciting to consider - for a brief moment - that it was the work of a bear, the damage was far less severe.  Even more telling, there wasn't a single berry anywhere around.  Once I noticed two huge scrapes nearby (both beneath overhanging branches) and the dogs sniffed out the easily-identifiable scat, I figured that the white-tailed deer rut must be starting.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Bear vs. Autumn Olive

These photos were taken in western Massachusetts by my sister.  Bear are an established presence in her area, and it looks like one of them decided to feast on the juicy autumn olive berries that are everywhere for the picking right now.  The scat found at the site was chock full of berry seeds.