Tag Archives: elk

Nursing Elk

From a distance, in a herd of elk, it is sometimes hard to distinguish the yearlings from the newest calves after they’ve lost their spots.  But there is one time when it is obvious.

Click/tap to watch the video here:  Roosevelt Elk nursing her calf

Roosevelt Elk nursing her calf
Roosevelt Elk nursing her calf

Elk Fog Horn

The fog was so thick this morning that I could hardly see across the Alsea River near the Oregon Coast.  Then I heard an elk call from a calf.  They sound like a weaker version of the adult cow.  So I looked and saw one or two elk making their way across the field making calls to each other like a sonar tracking system.  Then the rest of the herd appeared as the fog lightened a little.

Elk in Fog Video

elk on foggy morning
Elk on foggy morning

Oregon Coast Elk

The elk keep their newborns hidden for a month or so but we finally saw this herd’s 2 calves today.  To see the video, click or tap on the photo or this link:  https://youtu.be/AvWTXqUX4dA

elk calf
Fences are not as easy for calves to cross as their parents

This herd has a wide variety of ages.

elk herd
Only 2 new calves so far this summer (far left)

Here is a yearling bull just starting to grow his antlers.  They are just nubs this summer.  Next summer he’ll have a set of spikes.

yearling bull with antler nubs
Yearling bull (left) with antler nubs showing

This one looks pretty sickly.  You can see her ribs and she doesn’t have much hair.

Sickly-looking cow elk
Sickly-looking cow elk

The rancher’s cows want to chat with the elk but she’s having none of it.

elk and cows have conversation
They are so stupid…they think I sat in white paint and dipped my head in black paint

This bull has some interesting antlers.

bull elk with crooked antler
Crooked antler

This is a nice looking bull.  Looks like 9 points to me; unless I don’t know which ones count.

9 point bull elk
9 points?

Little one asks mom for dinner.

Elk calf with mama
Elk calf with mama

Wildlife are Resourceful

I’m pretty sure these are some young wood ducks starting to get their colors.  The blue feathers and the white around the eye that trails off like eyeliner are especially pretty.

Young Wood Ducks
Young Wood Ducks

The elk are starting to graze on apples and wild blackberries now.  They can reach further than I can.

elk in blackberries
Elk grazing in wild blackberries

Why is it that we can’t get a sunflower to grow in fertile soil but if a chipmunk plants it…

sunflower
Sunflowers planted by chipmunk

Maybe they have magic spit?

3 Elk Calves

There were 3 elk calves in this small Roosevelt Elk herd today.  I read that a calf is fully weaned by the end of the summer…about 2 months old.  And a calf will gain 250-300 pounds in the first year.  As quickly as they gain weight, maybe these 2 calves are only a couple weeks apart?  I’ve got more questions than answers!

Calves find Mom by smell
How do calves and moms find each other again?

The calves don’t stick right next to mom all day so do they find each other again by smell or voice or sight?  I’ve seen the calf get close to a couple cows who chase it away before she finds the one she can nurse.

elk cow and calf
Cow not happy with calf

At least once during the summer I’ll see a yearling nursing and wonder if the mom had and lost a calf and her last year’s calf is just opportunistic?

Elk Yearling Nursing
Elk Yearling Nursing

They’re beautiful animals without a doubt.

elk calf sizes
Big size difference between calves

The Roosevelt Elk calves will mostly lose their spots by winter.  But the yearlings still act like kids; jumping, running and playing with each other.  Here’s one of the little calves trying to figure out the purpose of a scarecrow.  To watch this YouTube video in a larger window, click on the play arrow and then on the YouTube icon in the lower right corner.

Elk Calves Romping

Why are babies (and little children) just naturally happy?

[youtube https://youtu.be/aLPZuLB2BBw]

“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”  Matthew 18:2-6

elk calves
Elk calves playing in the field

Remembering Elder Packer’s teachings about the importance of children in our lives; even if we can’t have any of our own:  “And a Little Child Shall Lead Them”

Otters and Great White Egret

The wildlife parade began on Monday and has lasted all week!

In addition to the elk herd, at least 2 families of otters are coming by everyday.  Here’s a favorite video of the otters.  You may want to click on YouTube (bottom, right) for better viewing.

[youtube https://youtu.be/xQvKncghikw]

This evening we had a special visitor that we don’t see very often.  4 Great White Egret fished for a while and then roosted in a nearby tree.

great white egret
I wonder if these are young egrets with a parent?

They just look like a white version of the Great Blue Heron.

great white egret
Finding a comfortable tree for roosting

They are graceful birds.

great white egret
If they snack on bugs they’ve found the right spot