On Tuesday night around 1700 hours, I saw a visitor near the visitor's center. The shop was closed up and I asked if I could answer any questions he might have. He said he just wanted to see what goodies we had inside. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
"You want to see a rattlesnake" he said to me.
Um, not really but sure.
"It has its dinner sitting right next to it."
So we walk over to this area where we usually hold weekend talks and sure enough Mr. Rattler is waiting for his prey to die. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
The visitors went on to go on a hike as I talked with some other visitors about snakes, flowers, trees, and other questions. I now had how I was going to waste your good tax dollars for the next hour. Watching the snake eat dinner. I talked with Mr. Russia and Ms. Ukraine for quite a while. Then Baker came over and she watched it with us. Heck, we thought the poor baby squirrel was dead and the rattler was just waiting for us stupid people to stop watching it. I mean could you eat if someone was staring at you the whole time. Gosh, if the condors only knew they were constantly watched. Like they don't. Anyway, we sat there watching it. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
And then the squirrel moved back into that hole. We all kind of jumped. Then the snake mouthed it back out. And then a Stellar Jay and Scrub Jay landed near the snake. I pictured it in my mind. One of the birds grabbing the snake and swinging it around. Once it let go, it would clap on one of our faces. And then that person would go screaming around in circles all the while, we snapped photos. Luckily, it didn't happen, but darn. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
A little bit went by and BEP joined us. Now, I was the only one on duty, but we were all in uniform. Then the home schooling family joined us. They took some photos because they can use that for a school project or something like that. This was a family who hadn't found the condom isle in the store because these kids could not have been more than a year apart. The kids all thanked us for answering their questions and showing them the rattler. All the visitors left and we all sat there waiting, waiting. We decided we would go eat dinner ourselves and come back up. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
About 8, Pete called and said the snake had half the squirrel in its mouth. We jumped into the vehicle and headed up the hill, but now the snake was in the hole and probably a little stuck because we definitely could see the bulge. I wanted BEP to pull it out by the rattle---JOKING. (I leave for Hawaii tomorrow)
Just another day in the park. Life is hell sometimes.
And then today rolled around. It is Wednesday and tomorrow I leave on a vacation somewhere. You might have figured it out already. Anyway, I drove down SZ Highway to another Town. During the drive I saw the usual---cows, squirrels, hawks---but I also got to see a deer. No antelopes today. On the way back I saw a mom deer with twins and another female without kids. Still the bachelorette.
I got back to the park and was finishing up work when I came out of one trailer to go to VT's trailer. I looked up and thought when did VT get a cat. But then I realized the cat was a little bigger than a common one. He (or she, but I'll use he) looked at me and walked away. I told VT about it and he came out from playing his stupid video game, but we couldn't see it. Then VT went back inside, but I called him out again because I thought Kitty was going to pounce a rabbit. VT said the rabbit was too big because it was a youngin'. But the gopher that we watch Kitty pounce on was not and then we watched him eat it down. VT gave me the binos just as Kitty looked our way and it was the most amazing face. One you could love forever.
I got in the car and started down the road only to be met by mom and bambi near the road. I paused and bambi challenged me for just a second before racing after mom. As I was waiting, I looked over to my left to see another mom and baby. And I slowly drove away not to startle either into the road.
I put away my equipment and was heading down the hill slowly because Skinny Minny had just rode by on her bike and it was dark so I didn't want to fill out the paperwork of hitting her. I came around the corner to a bright red light in the road. I stopped and before me were two nice size raccoons doing I have no idea what. Again, the vehicle was challenged. I had to drive by real slow because one had just stepped off the road a short distance and I am sure was going to try to get into the 'raccoon club' by racing under the car.
And that folks was my wild days. Off to the island. While I am away check out photos here http://mtnbkaz.photosite.com/