Author Topic: Fauna Native to Your Area  (Read 210820 times)

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Offline madrona

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Fauna Native to Your Area
« on: September 15, 2010, 09:55:10 PM »
This is not just a place for birds and mammals that you encounter in your surroundings (or even places you have traveled to) but also reptiles, fish, insects, etc.  Hopefully, you will share your stories and descriptions and photos too. 
   Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to
      rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams

Offline madrona

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2010, 10:59:47 PM »
I live beside the ocean, in central Vancouver Island.  You might say that the ocean is my back yard!

An animal that we love to watch, and which is flourishing here, is the River Otter (Lutra canadensis) - http://www.vancouverisland.com/wildlife/?id=100 It is a common creature along our shoreline, and is not to be confused with the Sea Otter which was virtually wiped out along the BC coast (thanks to the fur trade)  :sad, and is now slowly recovering.

Most people who live by the ocean are wary of the otters though - they can damage property and leave a smelly mess.  We occasionally see them investigating the area around our deck, and they actually gnawed through the wooden lattice that was in place to prevent them accessing it and denning there.  The lattice has now been replaced with sturdy metal mesh, which has also been sunk into the soil to prevent them digging under it.  People with ponds and fish also do not care to have otters visiting as they will take the fish, and destroy the pond plants as they bathe in the fresh pond water.  So far, we have been fortunate in that they have not visited our pond.   :pray

They love to visit boats that are moored in their territory, and we have on occasion watched them taking turns to clamber into boats, usually at the lower stern end, and explore the boat before diving off back into the water - and repeating the process, over and over.  Boat owners get pretty upset with the damage they can do - and the mess that they leave behind.   :msick

They are often seen in large groups - we currently have a group of six that visit the shore where we live on a regular basis.  The young ones can be heard loudly making their high pitched 'peep' calls - and when we hear that it's our signal to go watch them have fun.  This afternoon we watched them eating - one had a huge flounder.


(CLICK Picture to watch video)

They were aware of our presence, and it was amusing to watch the large one deliberately come close and mark his/her territory.  I had never seen this before - s/he did a great job of spreading the smelly stuff around.   :mhihi


(CLICK Picture to watch video)
   Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to
      rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams

Offline Rajame

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2010, 11:09:33 PM »
Madrona,

Thank you for the look into the life of the antics of the sea otter. The new topic is a great idea!

Hugs,
Rajame  :heart
Your soul lights up the room as if the sun is beaming directly.

Offline birdvoyer

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2010, 05:26:52 AM »
Madrona, your little River otters must be entertaining to watch. When they started coming out from under the rock, I was wondering how many were in there. I had to reread your post to see what the one was eating. I love their little peeping sounds they use.

You are very lucky to have all of the wildlife so near (minus the messes and distruction of course) for you to enjoy and learn about daily. Thank you for giving us a peek.
   :eclove

Offline boonibarb

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2010, 08:11:06 AM »


Those are GREAT videos mad!
You have a good view of the otters there.
wooohoooo!

Offline madrona

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2010, 10:35:38 AM »
All six otters were back this morning.  I think the big rock in the photos, with the hole beneath it where they hang out is one of their favourite places.

Here they come ....


(CLICK picture to view video)

Love to see them bounding along out of the water like that.

More to come ... a very interesting video of them interacting.  But too long for Photobucket, so I'm checking out YouTube!   :nod2
   Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to
      rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams

Offline auroradawn

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2010, 10:50:11 AM »
That was a wonderful video, I loved the way they hopped to the rock  :eclol

Offline birdvoyer

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2010, 11:30:15 AM »
Hmmm, were Doug and Sheila visiting Madrona?  I saw the little blue boat...  :biggrin3

Offline madrona

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2010, 04:00:11 PM »
Good question, birdvoyer - but alas not Doug's blue boat.  That one belongs to Mr. Madrona!  Good for a short crab fishing expedition.

And now ....  My first YouTube video ever.  I am very pleased with this - the otters performed well for the camera.  They were aware they were being filmed, I am sure.  Lots of marking and mutual grooming went on.  And the 'big one' went to check the logs s/he had marked on previous occasions.  Guess s/he thinks that will keep the photographer at bay.   :mhihi

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRyfeAdM6-4" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRyfeAdM6-4</a>

(Be sure to watch highest resolution (480) and full screen - next best thing to being there - better in a sense because you don't get to smell them!)
   Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to
      rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams

Offline passerine

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2010, 04:16:20 PM »
Very cool, otter cam :biggrin3  I seen an otter in the Somass river today, i think he was a different kind, it looked like his head was spotted. Oh and there was a bear, eagle & great blue heron I need a better camera.

Offline Thumper66

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2010, 05:05:26 PM »
Madrona...I enjoyed watching your 3 River Otter videos.  They can be so hilarious at times.  My brother-in-law and I use to go fishing on the Nestucca River (here in Oregon) and reel in our lines just to watch them romp around in and out of the water, just like in your videos.  You must get so much enjoyment from these little fellers.  Thanks for sharing them with us.  :clap

Offline amyam

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2010, 06:00:26 PM »
Madrona - thank you for the delightful otter videos.  I'm slowly getting to know all the different places to go here for information and interractions.  Your camera shows such fine, clear detail, it's like seeing with young eyes!!!  That's what's great about our cameras!  Thank you for sharing these treasures.   Here, we have beauty too; I am absolutely loving your animals and eagles = they are exciting and endearing; and life is challenging.  I believe there is much that's magical about animals we don't know; people like you experience them though because you are there with them.  You are fortunate, and I love to hear your stories.  Thank you so much.
Amyam

Offline emc

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2010, 06:10:09 PM »
Great action movie of the river otters.  I am curious tho, aren't you at the sea?  Sea water in a sound?

Love those otters..... :redheart
beth
from California

Offline Tigerlady105

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #13 on: September 16, 2010, 06:48:30 PM »
Those river otters sure like to play!  Just like a bunch of kids.  And the adult definitely was claiming the territory!  It must be fun to see all of that right in front of you without leaving home.   :nod2
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Offline madrona

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Re: Fauna Native to Your Area
« Reply #14 on: September 16, 2010, 07:18:46 PM »
Glad you're all loving the otters.  I think we all have many interesting creatures in our areas that we can share. 

Welcome to our forum and to this thread, amyam.  I hope you will be a frequent visitor.  :ecsmile I was lucky that Mr. Madrona had a steady hand when he took the videos, especially the last one.  He was sitting on our steps waiting for them to put in an appearance.  The camera sometimes does not perform well - I think it helps to keep the battery fully charged.   :nod2  I also wish I had it on hand more often.  Sometimes we see things happening that we would love to share, but the camera is nowhere around. 

emc - the river otters spend a lot of time along the shoreline - but they usually are not too far from fresh water streams.  Yes - our bay is the ocean - but it is fed by a creek, and I am guessing that they spend lots of time in the creek too.  The bay provides them with a lot of fish - it is shallow and sandy and there are lots of flatfish like sole or flounder around.  Their well-fed appearance must be testimony to the plentiful supply of fish available.
   Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to
      rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams