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Coyote on the hunt for breakfast

Coyote on the hunt for breakfast

Such a pretty lady, eh? She looked absolutely stunning as she hunted the fields in the Upper Beaver Meadows area of Rocky Mountain National Park this past Sunday. It seems like if I see coyotes in the park, this is usually the spot. The ones there seem quite comfortable with the humans that intrude on their domain and oftentimes just go about their business, ignoring the interlopers. This particular one was clearly looking for a meal, at one point stopping and listening ...

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Bison graze at ease along the Madison River

Bison graze at ease along the Madison River

This beautiful scene kickstarted our visit to Yellowstone National Park last month. Winter had been harsh up there with a great deal of snowfall and the spring was a wet one. However, all that moisture made for a lush, green landscape and rivers flowing full and quick. Soon after arrival we set out for a quick exploration trip and found a herd of bison grazing along the banks of the river. Above, a cloud-dotted sky with spots of bright blue peering ...

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The intense focus of a raptor

The intense focus of a raptor

While raptors like this Red-tailed Hawk are certainly gorgeous, they are also ferocious predators. With the right look, they can look quite pretty but at the same time be downright intimidating as this pretty lady appears in this capture. Karma is a captive bird, used for falconry and education. A few weeks ago I and my son got the opportunity to spend a lot of time photographing her and some other raptors up close and personal. Found across all of North America, Red-tailed ...

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The master of the deep forest

The master of the deep forest

Rumor had it that the Moose in my favorite area had finally returned after spending the past month or so at higher altitude. The weather looked iffy at best but I could not resist at least making an attempt to see them Sunday. At 10,000+ feet in altitude I knew it would be cold and fresh snow had fallen. There was some welcome sun initially but soon the clouds descended bringing a thick fog and snow began to fall again. It ...

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Barn Owl owlet puts on a show

Barn Owl owlet puts on a show

Such a ham. While its siblings remained hidden in the next within the tree cavity, this little one seemed to revel in the attention myself and a half dozen other photographers gave him a few weeks ago. Three times he scampered out of the nest, and then back in, climbing around and putting on a display each time. It was undoubtedly a bit cramped down in the home so this particular time it chose to stretch its wings above its head. ...

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Great Horned Owl keeping close watch

One of the mated pair of these cool hooters not far from where I live. It had chosen a perch well within some thick tree cover in an attempt to hide from some crows that were hassling its mate. It worked and I was able to get in some quality time photographing it. I just love their eyes!

Great Horned Owls are common across all of North America and are the type of owl often depicted in storybooks. During the day they are usually sleeping but at night they come alive and hunt with amazing accuracy in the dark.

A Great Horned Owl keeps watch from within some thick trees in Adams County, Colorado.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Great Horned Owl keeps watch from within some thick trees in Adams County, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Sam the Bald Eagle says, “Merry Christmas”

Sam says, “Merry Christmas!” Judging from the look on his face though, it appears Santa may have just left him coal in his stocking. 😉 From my family to yours, we wish you all a very merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

Sam the Bald Eagle says, "Merry Christmas".  (© Tony’s Takes)

Sam the Bald Eagle says, “Merry Christmas”. (© Tony’s Takes)

Rough-legged Hawk shows off for the photographer

I happened across this seasonal visitor yesterday. It was a bit indecisive trying to decide if it wanted to take off or hang out and have its picture taken. Thankfully, its hesitation allowed me to capture a nice shot of this visitor from the Arctic.

Rough Legged Hawks spend their summers in the Arctic where they mate and then spend winters in southern Canada and the lower 48. One of their most notable features is that their legs are feathered all the way down to the toes, one of only three American raptors like that. The other two being the Ferruginous Hawk and the Golden Eagle.

A Rough-legged Hawk raises its wings as it contemplates taking flight on the plains of Colorado.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Rough-legged Hawk raises its wings as it contemplates taking flight on the plains of Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Coyote on the hunt in the Colorado high country

A capture from this past September in Rocky Mountain National Park. I happened across this pretty lady as she was hunting the fields for breakfast. The sun and just come up over the horizon so the light was pretty much perfect – and she looked awesome in it. Best of all, she pretty much ignored me, staying focused on finding food.

Coyotes are amazingly adaptable animals and have not been greatly impacted by human expansion. Here in the area I live, this has resulted in some human – coyote conflicts, mainly with the coyotes attacking domestic pets. They range across North America and some have even been seen into Central America and Panama.

A Coyote keeps watch for a possible meal in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Coyote keeps watch for a possible meal in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bald Eagle makes a fast-moving flyby

It is Freedom Friday and the start of a long holiday weekend leading up to the celebration of the birth of Our Savior. I’ll be spending plenty of time with family and friends over the period and of course, certainly getting out and taking pictures.

This is a capture from this past weekend when I happened across this gorgeous Eagle northeast of Denver, Colorado. It was in no mood to stop and pose but did give me a nice flight series as it blasted by on a mission.

In the past two weeks I’m seeing Bald Eagle activity pick up quite a bit as more arrive for the season. Seems like this could be a really good winter for observing and photographing them. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year. Thank you so much for checking out my pictures!

A fabulously detailed Bald Eagle flies by fast on the plains of Colorado.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A fabulously detailed Bald Eagle flies by fast on the plains of Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bighorn Sheep lamb hams it up for its portrait

Just like a human child, young animals sometimes seem to revel in having their picture taken. Such was the case with this little lamb in the foothills southwest of Denver, Colorado recently.

While most of the herd ignored me, this one seemed to almost be begging to have its picture taken and of course I was happy to oblige.

Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the male ram’s monstrous horns. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season. The young are kept on high ledges to help protect them from predators.

A Bighorn Sheep lamb seems to smile as its picture is taken.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep lamb seems to smile as its picture is taken. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bison cow takes a whiff of Tatanka Tuesday

Perhaps I forgot to wear deodorant on this morning or, more likely, the males of the herd were smelling things up for the rut. This female cow was among the many being courted by the males last month.

She was actually demonstrating what is called the flehmen response. Many mammals will do this, curling their lips, raising their head and inhaling deeply allowing them to get a better sampling of a particular smell that interests them – kind of like a human taking a big whiff to smell something.

A Bison cow demonstrates the flehmen response at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bison cow demonstrates the flehmen response at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. (© Tony’s Takes)

Some Monday morning serenity with a gorgeous sunrise

The first day of the workweek is rarely a fun one and Monday oftentimes lives up to its reputation. Rather than feed the fire, here’s an image I snapped this weekend to calm things down. This was actually looking to the north at a 90-degree angle to the sunrise. The rising sun lit up the cool, cotton ball clouds and the reflection colored the ice and water orange. When you get stressed today, just try to think of a scene like this. 😉

A beautiful sunrise looking north with reflections on the ice and water of a pond.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A beautiful sunrise looking north with reflections on the ice and water of a pond. (© Tony’s Takes)

Mountain Goat kid kids around with the photographer

Oh, this little one. It was quite the entertainer for me back on the first of July at the top of Mount Evans. It and its mom and come to the top and I was doing my best to get some pictures of the kid. It however almost purposely seemed to evade my every move to get a clear shot.

Just as I would get in position, it would move itself around the side of a big boulder out of view. This went on for a while with me getting more and more annoyed. At one point when it was out of view, it stuck its head up above a boulder and I swear, it truly, purposely stuck its tongue out at me! Sigh. Some people’s kids! 😉

A shy Mountain Goat kid sticks its tongue out at the photographer.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A shy Mountain Goat kid sticks its tongue out at the photographer. (© Tony’s Takes)