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A Wild Day in Yellowstone

June 14, 2012

Just when you think it can’t get any better, it does! We had an early departure from Mammoth to Lamar Valley. Upon arriving, we noticed a strange coexistence between predator and prey. Wolves and coyotes intermingled with the bison and pronghorn; who were tolerant yet wary. Family life was also very apparent as coyote pups and bison calves nursed. Both black and grizzly bears with cubs dotted the high meadows.

A badger peeking out of it's den.

A precocious, young badger investigating the noise outside the den near the Yellowstone River Picnic trail. Photo by Melissa Dowland

The highlight of our afternoon hike was when we stumbled upon a set of young badgers in their burrow. One peeked out, with curiosity, to pose for great photos. Just when we thought it could not get any better, momma badger came home with a freshly killed ground squirrel to feed to her young.

The day was also filled with incredible bird life. From the majesty of the bald eagle, to the sweet songs of the warbling vireos, birds filled the air and valley. The morning was highlighted with an assortment of waterfowl, including eared grebes, cinnamon teal, and the “daffy-duck” like ruddy duck. After seeing the mountain bluebird and the western tanager, our leader Melissa Dowland elaborated on a quote by Thoreau: If the bluebird carries the sky on its back, the tanager carries the sun.

By Lou, Cindy, and Pam

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Suzy permalink
    June 15, 2012 10:31 am

    Wow. What an amazing opportunity. It is so heart warming to read about the majestic way of nature. The ebb and flow of the circle of life is just simple breath taking. Continue to post about the stone they call yellow. I will close with a great fishing quote that aplies to this experience “tight lines to all.”

  2. owensscience permalink
    June 16, 2012 1:07 pm

    Hey Pam – sounds like you all are having a wonderful time. It must be so amazing to see such a variety of animals in the beauty of Yellowstone. Enjoy the rest of your trip!

  3. Ginny Byrne permalink
    June 20, 2012 3:18 pm

    Mike is this your badger photo? He was up close and personal! Ginny B.

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