Sciencelog: 28 Nov 2015


Snow on millet that grew from the birdseed the squirrel missed.

snow on grass

Greetings from our home in Johnson Canyon, Utah. We had a couple of light dustings of snow and graupel (light, round pellets of snow), which gave me a chance to play with some photography. Living in the canyon, we never know what the weather will bring. We are quite a bit higher in elevation than Kanab, and the canyon acts like a river as the denser, cold air flows down from higher elevations. Because of that, our weather is often quite a bit colder than Kanab. We have had a couple of nights that got down to 12°F (-11°C).


The curve of the millet was just right to catch the snow.

snow on grass


Mule deer in the back yard.

Mule deer

With the cold weather, the Mule Deer herds are moving through. Every day, our driveway gives us an idea of how many have come through. We have a couple of bucks, six does, and a couple of yearlings that seem to have decided to stay here. They spend quite a bit of time near the house, and are not afraid of us, which is a bit surprise considering how much hunting goes on in this area. I have a LOT of photos, but I just can't resist taking more.


Mule Deer tracks in the driveway.

Mule deer tracks

Mule deer



I think this yearling would have come in the house if we opened the door.

Mule deer

Mule deer


Other animals are also migrating to the canyon. Every winter we get large numbers of hawks and eagles. A Red-tailed Hawk has been spending a lot of time along the cliffs, in spite of harassment from local ravens. I have not seen a Bald Eagle yet, but I am sure they are already here. The Canada Geese have moved in, and I got some shots of them flying past.


Raven harassing a young Red-Tailed Hawk

Red-tailed hawk and raven


After 15 minutes, the hawk gave up and moved up the canyon.

Red-tailed hawk and raven


Canada Geese heading south down the canyon.

Canada Geese


Kestrels are here all year, but they are still fun to photograph.

Kestrel

The weather systems moving through have given us some spectacular sunsets, and like the Mule Deer, I just can't resist taking photos.

sunset and cliffs


sunset


sunset


Have a wonder-filled week!

Robert Krampf
The Happy Scientist