Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

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semisynthetic
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Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu Apr 24, 2014 5:50 am


I left Academia, and the City, over a decade ago, and now live in a very sparsely populated area; it is very beautiful and rich in wildlife of a great many species. I had heard an enormous battle, (or courtship), late one night, and later obtained this Night Vision photograph of a Mountain Lion on my land. They are very shy and reclusive creatures; nevertheless, when I am in my "back yard" or the thickets, I am usually armed; (although it is a passing wolverine that is far more likely to be very cranky should I get in its way and want to try and cause me harm)! I would never shoot such a Beautiful creature as this cat unless it attacked me, which is very unlikely. As a boy, I lived with my grandparents, and had about 400 square miles of wilderness to enjoy and learn from. Most of Nature just wants to be left alone; "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" is a very good Idea and Ideal to live by.

I was very pleased to see this alpha-predator "in my back yard", for it helps to show how healthy the ecosystem is here. It is very green, and the activity outside is a 24 hour wonder. People in this area, in general, do quite a lot for Nature; foodstuffs and salt blocks are commonly placed in the backwoods, or in my case, as close as 100 feet from my deck, or a mile or so, down by the fork in my largest creek.

I thought you might enjoy seeing this photo of a beautiful, large native cat in the wild.
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Last edited by semisynthetic on Sat May 24, 2014 7:07 am, edited 2 times in total.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
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redcloud
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by redcloud » Thu Apr 24, 2014 6:15 am

Regarding predators...bobcats and coyotes are very common where we live (as are hawks, eagles and owls). Mainly because Portland is built within a forest and there are also many other animals immediately at our doorstep (especially raccoon's and skunks). I respect but don't feed the wild life mainly because they get comfortable getting closer, which ultimately can potentially end up with undesired consequences. For example...in the winter when food is scarce the coyotes go for anything, small dogs/puppies and house cats are particularly vulnerable. We have lost two cats to the coyotes so now we do not let them out before 8am and we lock them in after 4pm. We also have two dogs (setters), which we often walk off-leash on the trails in the forest. When our youngest was very small we wouldn't let him off-leash on the early morning walks because the coyotes were still roaming and were bigger than him. Now, both our dogs are larger and as there are two they run together and easily scare them off.

As for raccoon's they look cuddly but they too can be vicious when cornered. We have them everywhere around us - in our trees, under our deck, walking through our front and along the back garden. It is very common to be in our back yard during the summer and to see a family of raccoon's climb up or down the trees. The dogs go crazy when they see or smell them and the raccoon's hiss back from under our deck or in the trees. Some neighbors feed them as well but personally, I don't encourage it for reasons above.

Mountain lions, bears and wolves are also native but they are more likely to be found in the mountains or high desert away from the city.

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu Apr 24, 2014 9:17 am

There appears be some misunderstanding. When I mentioned "food", it was not leftovers.
(You should warn your neighbors that raccoons and skunks carry a number of diseases, namely RABIES).

Wild Animals are exactly that and Disney aside, if you do not know what you are dealing with, you are already in trouble. Anyone who lives IN the country is surrounded by thousands of acres of woodlands AND the natural wildlife to which this land is "home".
I can understand how living in an extended suburbia would invite coyotes and other opportunistic animals; that is not a problem for me here.

I was very pleased to find a pair of nesting Bald Eagles on my property this year; and of course Owls and Hawks, and Falcons along with their various prey, and in remarkable numbers. That, along with how "fat" everything here is, was one of the first things I noticed about the wildlife when I obtained this land and had my home built here.

Salt is put out for Deer. I never place any type of food except SEED corn; but where I live, food grows everywhere; and large acorns feed the deer in winter; deer feed the Mountain Lions. Placing salt and corn serves three purposes for me; photography, hunting quail, and helping a population of prey animals in a harsh winter. Others put out corn for the more or less the same reasons.
I (and countless other "residents" at my home) enjoy 7-8 acres of wonderful Blackberries, along with wild mushrooms, many wild greens and other very healthy eating out here. All of the ratios of micronutrients we are designed for are in the edible plants (and animals) of the woodlands. There is no "Sodium Benzoate as a Preservative" in the preserves and jams that are made from the fruits of my little piece of Earth. The wildlife would probably turn up there noses at my trash; except perhaps opossums and raccoons; but the "little" yard, about 5 acres, is very well fenced and secure.

By the way, species such as raccoons and bobcats and coyotes are so ubiquitous, that I didn't bother mentioning them earlier; they tend, in the wild, to avoid people as much as possible, however, near cities, I realize they can be a problem. Bears, a member of the pig family, are not picky eaters, but also generally wary of people. About the only 2 species which genuinely concern me are the wolverine, which will attack a bear! Plus, the family Agkistrodonpiscivorus, or "water moccassin", aka "cottonmouth"; this snake has a nasty mix of neuro and necrotoxins, but more importantly is highly territorial and very aggressive when nesting. I read the other day just the opposite; this fellow was obviously unaware of a well known point regarding the only poisonous water snake in the USA. I have been chased by this species too many times since I was a boy to not know they ARE aggressive!

This is an area that is empty of "too many people", and relatively wild; Ergo, (most) people who have grown up in such an area have developed a very good understanding of Nature, and what to do and what not to do. Which is poisonous, which is not.

When the average "yard" in my "neighborhood" is 120-1000 acres or more, to place salt, or corn is much less hazardous an action than living and working in the city, a wild jungle that follows very few rules, yet enacts more than anyone can keep up with! I chose to live IN a wilderness area, where I can clearly see into the Milky Way at night without the Light Pollution from a city; or the CONSTANT Noise Pollution. Or yet another Autocratic-like-twit deciding to tell me how I should live and what I should do, especially when they are ill equipped and too ignorant of a specific problem to even attempt doing so. The quiet of the country is also very peaceful; and a sense of Independence and at least SOME level of self sufficiency is taken for granted as the thing to do. Unfortunately, tens of thousands of urban and suburbanites learn the hard way after every natural disaster.

The only "trails in the forest" here, are those made by deer and other, smaller game who use the underbrush trails nearby.

redcloud, I am sorry that you lost your cats; but here, the wild game is so thick, that I have never had problems with coyotes; I do hear (and enjoy) their singing on quiet nights; the country night has a darkness that people in the city may have never experienced; well, maybe camping or something; but I love it, and have since I was a boy. I grew up in "Real Country Dark" as a boy.

My grandfather took care of his wells 7 days a week; and would drop me off before dawn at my "favorite" areas to hunt, and pick me up later in the day at a predetermined time. I would hunt; with a small shotgun, and a rifle over my shoulder. I was 7 years old. I learned a great deal about Nature in the next few years, and which animal was fierce, and which were harmless, and which tasted best. :D I saw much more than any book could show me; and what I learned of Color, in particular, would help me in the Laboratories later on; but that is a very different subject.

I lived with my grandparents for all of my youth; went to California, [skipped 2 grades (thank you)], and entered College early.

Now I am back in the woodlands I have loved all my life; and although I retired early, I find myself very often, working harder than ever(!), and also enjoying the things I love most; Music, the woodlands, the Sciences, reading, my "neighbors", and my friends who fly in to visit, and a lack of interference, (in general), from an "overabundance of The Masses". I keep an apartment in the nearest "large" city, a couple of hundred miles away (+/-); this way I can go to concerts, or do whatever, and crash THERE. After living in the country, the noise, the vulgarity, rudeness and outright stupidity that I see in this "better, gated community" of my City apartment, makes me very happy to know that in 2-3 hours, I will be back HOME AGAIN!

I just thought it was very cool to know and show the Mountain Lion! I thought "seeing" even a photo makes it seem less abstract, and not "scary", but a beautiful, and truly wild, large cat.
Last edited by semisynthetic on Fri Apr 25, 2014 8:54 am, edited 3 times in total.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

ro
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by ro » Thu Apr 24, 2014 3:13 pm

semisynthetic wrote:the country night has a darkness that people in the city may have never experienced
I'd like to chime in about darkness. I grew up in a huge, well-lit city and moved to a smallish New England town at age 9. yes, we'd done camping trips and visited people in the country, but not 'til we moved here did I learn to navigate in the pitch black woods on a moonless night. what a priceless thing for a child to learn.

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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by ro » Thu Apr 24, 2014 3:15 pm

oh yeah, nice mountain lion!

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:14 pm

If nothing else, ro, it taught you to use your head and your senses, and to not be driven by fear, but to control and command your own life just a little bit more than before.
Last edited by semisynthetic on Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

ro
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by ro » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:21 pm

Exactly.
now, there are orange lights all over the place, and I have to walk about an hour to get into the woods and out of range of those effers.
which.. hmm. thank you. maybe I'll do that tonight!

jack white
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by jack white » Fri Apr 25, 2014 10:10 am

Hello kitty.

P cool.

There used to be lots of foxes where I live. But hunters slaughtered most of them one winter at the behest of farmers concerned over their chickens. It was p revolting seeing these Neanderthals boasting about how many innocent animals they killed. Haven't seen a fox in a few years now. Mainly just badgers/pheasants/etc..


What type of camera u use to capture lion?
gonna burn brightly
for a while

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Fri Apr 25, 2014 9:53 pm

jack white wrote:Hello kitty.

P cool.

There used to be lots of foxes where I live. But hunters slaughtered most of them one winter at the behest of farmers concerned over their chickens. It was p revolting seeing these Neanderthals boasting about how many innocent animals they killed. Haven't seen a fox in a few years now. Mainly just badgers/pheasants/etc..


What type of camera u use to capture lion?
There are many cameras around the place, but this one, used for the kitty, was about the CHEAPEST one of any type I have! A "Browning Surveilence Camera" in "Realtree Oak Camo", lashed around a small oak tree.

One simply removes one thumbdrive, and replaces it with a new one and downloads the image (when I am back at the house). This was funny (to me), because many of the other "better" cameras send a signal directly to me on a separate computer system, but no kitty! I bet nearly 50% of the homes around here have SOME kind of surveilence, but it is usually a deer trail and for hunting. I hunt quail in season, because they are tasty and fresh; wild game, cooked well, is quite good. Much better than "frozen" meats from the grocery store! I also have 3 Thermal Vision Cameras that are very nice, and create images that are amazingly clear at night.

The photo, along with SEVERAL OTHERS I found on my I-Phone and email, came from other people that are adjacent to my property, about 3 miles away in several directions. When I told them of the "Fight and or Courtship Battle" I heard, there was a laugh and an idea to look for "kittens"! Nature is Wonderful; for if there is NOT enough resources for these cats, they are far less likely to breed. But, there is much space and sometimes, too many deer. Hunting provides meat and helps maintain a healthy herd.

If the chicken farmers you mentioned would simply improve their coups, the foxes could not get in! It isn't Rocket Science!
Many of my neighbors have poultry, but they also have exceptionally well made coups to avoid the problem you mentioned; for there are grey/ silver fox and red fox here; and any number of predators, including most larger snake species that will enjoy an egg or chicken dinner (if they can get it!).

It is my personal belief that, if you kill it, it should be for food or a safety necessity, I do not like to kill snakes, because they do a valuable service, (besides, I know which are and are not a threat to me). Otherwise, to kill without need is a terrible waste, and personally, I have no blood lust.
:D
Last edited by semisynthetic on Sun Apr 27, 2014 6:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Sat Apr 26, 2014 8:33 am

Today I drove out to a thicket area with a creek running through it. And an amusing and I think, very touching, simple incident occurred.
I took a short walk along the creek area, and I noticed a little bird, a type of sandpiper, was walking along the creekbank, parallel to me, and turning its head to and fro in order to "observe me" better; and this went on for some time. I pretended to not notice the little bird running along, less than 10 feet from me, absolutely oblivious to any danger; and it occurred to me that it was very likely that this little bird had never seen a person before; it exhibited no fear, but a great deal of curiosity. I believe it must have been nesting in the high walls of the creekbank somewhere further downstream, but even as I turned to walk back the 40-50 yards I had just been over, this curious little, long legged bird kept at a parallel position, and STILL watched me as I exited the creekbed and went up to the meadow where my Jeep was parked.

Such moments as these may seem very simple and dull to many people, but I think it was Beautiful. The creekbank is so high and is an unattainable "cliff", that the bird is safe from most predators, (since it is easier for the predator to go after something not so hard to reach); whereas most smaller birds are wary and easily frightened, this one acted as though it hadn't a care in the world; even time to "observe a new species" - me!

This is the 2nd time I have observed this over the years by the same aves species.
Last edited by semisynthetic on Sun May 04, 2014 1:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

redcloud
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by redcloud » Wed Apr 30, 2014 7:55 pm

Not the suburbs that this big cat was seen! This is city limits proper and a very populated area. Coincidentally, we were just at this park last night for my son's baseball game.

http://www.kgw.com/news/Cougar-spotted- ... 68571.html

runaway
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by runaway » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:04 pm

Just found this thread. Cool pic of the big cat.
I saw my first cougar two years ago in my front yard. It was surreal. I installed a trail camera with hopes of getting a pic of it but have got pictures of everything but (lots of bear, bobcat, coyotes, and the usual ungulates).
We're only 30 miles from Seattle but the wildlife out here is very abundant!

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu May 01, 2014 12:15 am

I am not a bit surprised that wildlife does so well around humans. It was long ago that I first read of Falcons being seen in NYC, nesting in highrise buildings, because pigeons were everywhere! More populated than McDonald's outlets! Big cats are shy; they are not afraid, however, yet they have an innate stealth that allows them to go where they please, usually unseen. I have been quietly "buried" in twigs and forest litter, within mere feet of many deer jumping the relatively short fences in one of my meadows on their way to where they will sleep; they walk and jump and do ALMOST everything in near complete silence; so it is easy to realize that whatever catches the deer, MUST BE EXCEPTIONALLY STEALTHY! The members of the animal kingdom that feed upon trash and park barrels are not so quiet; they need only be alert and fast, like coyotes and raccoons. Skunks or Polecats don't even need to be fast, and not even all that accurate!

redcloud is quite right about the raccoon APPEARING cuddly; in reality, I have seen one grab a taunting fool and form a living, chewing, growling "furball" around this fellows hand, and worked UP his arm until I whacked it sufficiently with a piece of lumber so it might be encouraged to accept victory and leave with haste. This clown who taunted the animal required an unknown number of stitches, a finger amputation and rabies shots (and other assorted types of nastiness) . This occurred in a city park, within the very heart of the city. He quite obviously had no idea how to deal with the raccoon.

The behaviour of Wildlife within city limits or even the edges of suburbs is markedly different than what is observed in their native wild state, and here is the problem as cities "encroach" upon ever increasing numbers of wildlife. They are likely to be more aggressive as they establish the area as their "own"; this leads to a territoriality just like you can imagine on "Wild Kingdom" reruns. The Mountain Lions in the area I live TRY THEIR VERY BEST NOT to be seen by anyone, and are terribly good at it. Wildlife in general, is very good at it, until mankind sometimes, even unwittingly, interferes.

Increasingly, as the number of people who just happen to live near enough that wildlife begin to be somehow troublesome, it can be an ordeal on BOTH humans AND the Wildlife! If I see certain species, I just stand, perhaps crouching a bit to be less threatening, and just wait for the animal to go by - IT DEPENDS ON THE ANIMAL! Sometimes, you need to attempt to inflict fear, "be big" (think puffer fish). I have seen the TV programs where a little 4-5 foot alligator sends the lady screaming; in the country and bayous or swamplands, it would be nothing at all - just "toss it back until it is big enough". Same with snakes; people kill them indescriminantly BECAUSE THEY ARE "SNAKES"! It would be so much better if the people there, knowing they ARE in proximity with Wildlife, would bother to learn something about it! To live more harmoniously. Some of the largest indigenous snakes are completely nonpoisonous, although any reptile bite should be treated immediately for fear of infection from bacteria in their jaws. Some reptiles are deadly, and are spread across most of the USA; if you are in a known area for these reptiles, KNOW THEM! by their patterns.

I mentioned that since I was a little boy I've enjoyed and respected Nature; if you are close enough for them to visit you, it behooves you to become informed enough to know how to react. It is especially important for those of you who live in areas where your local or state government has seized control of your 2nd amendment and other personal rights; it would be laughable for me to "call 911" if I found myself in a predicament that required quick and decisive action that I would, quite naturally, take care of myself. ( I can only imagine calling the Sheriff's office; hey, uh K., there is an "animal" here, can you save me?) HA! They might think I'd been drinking, or something.

This makes knowing what to do and NOT TO DO even more imperative to anyone who lives by an area rich in wildlife, but poor in your legal ability to deal with the problem yourself should it become necessary. Frankly, it may BE BETTER to have someone who knows what to do take care of these matters; assuming there is time!

Living IN THE WILD, where the animals are "home", is very different than seeing a confused cat or bear or moose or whatever cause problems where there are too many people. If they have become excited or panicked to a point they will respond with their very natural and understandable Wild Nature, and likely stand their ground. So back off. Slowly, and look askance. And learn what is best to do to avoid a panic, by keeping your cool and dealing with the animal properly if the need should arise. Most animals sense fear like we do hearing a loud laugh or someone waving frantically to get your attention. I never cease to be amazed by the empathy and ability of even the smallest of Wild Life to size up an opponent.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu May 01, 2014 3:31 am

redcloud wrote:Not the suburbs that this big cat was seen! This is city limits proper and a very populated area. Coincidentally, we were just at this park last night for my son's baseball game.
WHO WON? What was the Score?




http://www.kgw.com/news/Cougar-spotted- ... 68571.html
This "news" report. Oh My. It is a Dark Art to cram so much paranoia and so many Phobias into a report about a kitty track. TRULY, I do not mean to be unkind; so I will make the supposition that this was a verrry slow news day. Good Grief. It does show the stealth of the cat, however; NO KITTY PHOTO! :(
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

semisynthetic
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Re: Here Kitty, Nice Kitty Cat

Post by semisynthetic » Thu May 01, 2014 8:54 am

I am very glad I placed this photo of kitty here. I am very happy and I must admit, surprised, that so many people were, in different ways, somehow touched by it; whether it is unusual or not for you, like redcloud, since you too live near a wooded area, or simply because it is Beautiful and exists free and wild, ranging in a very large, woodland area filled with lakes, creeks, swamps and very OLD mountains and meadows filled with wildflowers and kitty snacks, like deer. Or maybe it brings back memories that had been dormant. The Greening has begun, and it is so Beautiful; from tiny lichens to Giant Oaks, and Eagles and Kingfishers; it is, for me, the way things should be. I am glad I live WHEN and WHERE I do, so that I may still enjoy it. I feel a bit ashamed in some ways, that I have taken such Beauty for granted for so long; my life was either in the woodlands, or in the Laboratories. Quite a dichotomy to live in, huh? The Woodlands certainly SMELLS MUCH BETTER! Especially after lightning cleanses the air with ozone, and the rains wash dust from the sky, it is Wonderful.
"Everything is a Poison; it is the amount or degree that separates one Poison from another"
Paracelsus

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