Tuesday, June 2, 2009

What Lurks in YOUR Apple Tree?

Jan Gibson

Today is my dad's birthday and I was on the back porch talking to him on the phone when I saw something streak across the back orchard and climb into the last apple tree before the hay field. I told my dad what was happening and he said to go get my camera quick!

I thought I'd done fairly well with the doe and twins that I posted the other day but conditions were so much better today that all the pics I took came out very well indeed and I took 31 of them! This is just one of the close ups - isn't he cute?

I'm not 100% sure but I think this is a groundhog or woodchuck as he looks like the guy they drag out in February to tell us whether we'll have more winter or not. Maybe not as fat and well-fed but with the same features overall. I've been told that they're just making their way into this area which is why they're being seen more often.

Anyway, I'm finally fulfilling my desire to photograph as much of the wildlife here as possible but I'm spending so much time with the camera that I haven't had time to actually paint anything in a goodly while! Well, it's supposed to rain a little later this week so I may get in at least one painting day!

In the meantime, enjoy our little furry friend here and the beautiful weather - he says winter is over for our part of the country anyway!


readingsully2 said...

Jan, I never realized they climbed trees...I thought they were in the ground, burrow types. LOL. Great shot.

~Barbara~ said...

I'm thinking that I want a camera like that one.
Very good pictures. Getting good in your old age.

Jan said...

Thanks, Carole, I didn't know they climbed trees either. We've only recently begun to see them in this area and this is only the second one I've seen here. When I told my husband about him, he said that he now knew where all the peaches had gone. We were going to have a fairly decent peach crop this year but the peaches have disappeared from the trees!

Barbara, this is a great camera and probably makes up for a lot of operator error, but I think I'd have been just as well off with a higher MP and less zoom. That zoom is heavy and even with the image stabilization, pictures can come out a little blurry because it's hard to hold the camera steady. But, boy! when it's done right, the picture quality is great!

Teresa said...

Hi Jan,

What a great shot! We were in the Blue Ridge mountains (NC) a couple of years ago and stopped by one of those cute little stores. There was a large embankment with a stream behind the store so I wandered over to take a look (I'm always on the lookout for a photo op) and saw all these "critters" scrambling around on the sides of the dirt embankment. I'd never seen them before. I went into the store and asked the clerk about them and was told they were woodchucks! Guess they are moving into NC. Hey... we can hold our own Punxsutawney Phil event here in NC..... how 'bout Beautancus Bill? (that's pronounced Bo-tank-KUS!) LOL!

Jan said...

LOL, Teresa! Raleigh has it's own groundhog (or, in my case, maybe I should say "treehog"!)already. I think it's called Sir Walter Raleigh but I've slept since February and can't remember!

Funny, I hadn't seen any of these critters around here then all of a sudden, I'm seeing them everywhere! I think they've been in the mountains for some time but not common here in the piedmont.

I had to go get some groceries earlier and when I came home there was one running into the woods from near the barn!

My husband says he's going to teach me to shoot something other than a camera! Yeah, right - as if I could shoot one of those cute little things!

"JeanneG" said...

When I first saw this photo, I thought it was a bear. We had apple trees in our back yard in Oregon and you could see traces of bear all around them.