Sunday, August 17, 2014

A nice healthy bull

It seems he likes apples!






I think he knows where the apples are coming from, and that I'm watching! 

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The buck stops up there & the bears are still around and a nice honey bee photo

I like this one. Click on it.
Honey bee on small yellow flowers. An astragalus 

Not a trophy, but a nice blacktail for the freezer later on!


 I wondered why the camera had been unplugged & the battery and wire 10 or 15 feet away back in the trees. Usually it's an elk that chews up the wire, but it all was still in good shape. I thought I knew what had done it & I was right. The bear just didn't want me taking his (or her) picture I guess. 


                                                      A closeup. Probably from the rear
This is why I don't put any of the hives up on the hill. I do have a 12v fence charger, but it would be a risk even so. Not being the world's most accomplished bee keeper, they have enough problems putting up with my administrations. I don't need any help from the bears.

Friday, August 1, 2014

This week's game cam photos


  The elk are here now, but this cow is the only one on the cameras.


  I'm pretty sure that photo #4 is a young bigfoot.








 It's nice to see such a variety of animals on one camera in such a short time!


Sunday, July 6, 2014

Bees and flowers plus:Skunk-3 Dog-0 Me-two!


I'm getting fast on the focusing,. These flowers don't have much nectar of pollen so the bees move fast. 
Zoom in & see her tongue in the tiny flower! I think it is Redshank or ladies thumb. Persicaria maculosa.
This would have been a perfect shot if that blue flower hadn't been in the way. :-)

Enlarge, look closely, and you can see a 1mm hitchhiker that hopped onto her. I think it's a thrip.
Here's an enlargement:

I love the colors in this one.

Skunks vs Daisy: Skunk-3  Dog-0   Me-two! 
The second one let out a squirt on the inside of the blanket I covered the trap with, but I escaped un-odored.
No doubt there are several more.
The blue flower is probably batchelors button. (Wild chicory doesn’t have as many petals.)
  The red-pink clusters with the splotch on the leaves. Macroscopic flowers: knotweed, smart weed,   Redshank or ladies thumb. Persicaria maculosa
Each flower on the persicaria is no bigger than the size of one of the honey bee’s eyes. That fact gets lost when the perspective is enlarged in the macro photo. This fools me when I look at some of these photos and I lose the sense of the proper scale of how small those flowers actually are. They were hard to photograph. I had to hand hold with manual focus aperture priority & they only were on each individual flower for a fraction of a second. Each good clear shot well framed & in focus that I got, took at least 15 or 20 crappy ones to get it.  I need more practice & I’ll get quicker.

Those were all part of a packet of “friendly insect” seeds somebody gave us a couple of years ago. Except for the knot weed which came with the alpaca shit. At least the bees like it. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Some of my work made the front page on the Kennedy Space Center's website!

Some years ago I was asked to etch a portrait of each of the Gemini astronauts on both a curved beveled piece of glass that was awarded to each of them, as well as on heavy 1/2" glass disks that were installed at the exhibit featuring each astronaut at the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®   This was a break from the usual church work. I was invited to attend their induction and meet them. The fact that they each went home with something I made is kind of cool.

Friday, June 27, 2014

De-Skunking Your Dog

No! You can't go back out.

I wish she'd stick to vole hunting. She's better at it.

It was only a matter of time.  The following formula helped immensely.  I used a drop of canola oil in each eye before washing her, as she must have gotten a nose full first before heading the other way.
Now I guess I should set up the live trap near the hives. I doubt there is just one, so I think I'd better keep it set for the summer.
Even with a liberal spraying of fabreeze, there is still more than a trace in the air. Perhaps our noses will become desensitized in a couple of hours.

Skunks are everywhere—in the country and in the city. If your dog gets sprayed, there are ways you can rid him of the scent without using your entire ketchup (or tomato juice) supply to do it.
Over-the-counter products such as Nature's Miracle Skunk Odor Remover, which is available at most specialty pet retailers, are a quick fix, but if you don't have that on hand, try the following:

Step 1: Keep Fido (In this case Daisy) outside (oops! should have read this first)


While you prepare the de-skunking solution, keep your dog outside after he's sprayed so he doesn't carry the smell into your house. Check his eyes; if they're irritated or red, immediately flush them with cool water.

Step 2: Mix the Ingredients

Mix together:
  • 1 quart of 3-percent hydrogen peroxide (available at your local pharmacy)
  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon liquid dishwashing soap
Wearing rubber gloves, wash your dog with this solution immediately after he's been sprayed. DO NOT get the solution in the dog's eyes. (If you don't have peroxide, baking soda, and liquid soap on hand, use vinegar diluted with water.)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

The birds & the bees

Just a few photos I took yesterday and today.
There were a pair of scarlet tanagers that were pretty upset. A baby had fallen out of the nest.. It is hanging out under a lilac bush. I hope it makes it.  I got dive bombed by the mother The nest is probably 40 or 50 feet up in the oak somewhere.
Best viewed full size. Click to enlarge.






The male stayed way up in the tree. I used a 400mm lens.

I'm always amazed by the variation in colors of these honey bees. My hives are filled with mutts.
The focus isn't great & I washed out the tiny flowers on some of the shots, but the bees never stayed more than a couple of seconds on each one & then moved to another. That didn't leave me much time.


 I didn't realize that flying bee was even in the frame, until I loaded it onto the computer.


These ladies are really pretty.

I wonder how many of these little flowers it took to collect that much pollen.