animals, Blog, Mountains, nature, Plants, wildlife

Night Visitors, Part Deux

Day 13

I opened my eyes at 6:30 this morning. It seemed much too dark for me to be so well rested. I came downstairs, opened the shades in the living room and watched the darkness give way to the light of day. I love these early mornings before anyone else stirs. It gives me so much space to marvel at my life and my surroundings.

By 8:30 am, everyone is up and stirring. The blissful silence falls away to the sound of water running and coffee brewing. We are such creatures of routine. I sometimes find myself looking forward to my morning coffee as I go to bed at night. Morning is definitely my time.

The Field Camera

img_7192We do not check the images on the field camera every day. For the most part it contains pictures of birds or squirrels or even us, making our way around the house. At the back of our house the bird feeders are placed beside a path that extends down the hill to a small cleared bottom littered with Trillium in the spring. We have talked about installing some railroad tie steps for easy access from the house.

We put the SD card in the computer and clicked through the images. The usual daytime suspects appeared — doves, squirrels, the neighbor’s cat. The color images fade to black and white images as night sets in. Opossum, raccoons, and ‘Oh no”! A new visitor we had not yet seen.

More Night Visitors

We have heard coyotes on occasion, but had not yet seen any. But today, there he was. There were about six images as he smelled the area under the bird feeders turned and walked away. It is possible he was in pursuit of one of the raccoons or the opossum.

We are realizing through watching these images a lot about our environment. Our lovely pathway seems to function as an animal trail. We also know the animals are attracted to the smell of the bird food that falls to the ground or to the birdbaths where they also come to drink.

We live on three and one half acres of land. Only a small portion of our property — where our house is built — is cleared. We live in the foothills and the nights are getting cooler. Food sources will be more and more limited as the cooler weather moves in. We know we can simply stop feeding the birds for a while if need be to minimize the unwanted visitors.

Living With Nature

In researching I found that in North Carolina, all the animals we have seen here can be hunted. We are not hunters, but I grew up in an area where hunting was a way of  life. It seems this is still part of the culture here, but not one I am in favor of. I would first give up feeding the birds, than take the life of one of these creatures.

Every day offers a new discovery here in the foothills. I love my life here and so far, we are living quite well with the other inhabitants.

“Mother Nature is our teacher—reconnecting us with Spirit, waking us up and liberating our hearts. When we can transcend our fear of the creatures of the forest, then we become one with all that is; we enter a unity of existence with our relatives—the animals, the plants and the land that sustains us.” 
Sylvia Dolson