A Late Winter Blast

A week of bitterly cold and snowy weather has reduced my outdoor activities and wildlife sightings. But, I still have enough images to get the attention of friends in warmer places, especially those who enjoy winter in the snow belt, vicariously!

The snow pack is several inches deep, with powder over a fragile base. Snowshoes aren’t really necessary, but they provide stable footing and easier travel on the crusty base, drifts and uneven terrain.

Red squirrels have mastered winter survival. When not foraging on a cache of spruce cones or at the bird feeders, they scurry in and out of cozy snow tunnels for shelter and predator avoidance.

Bad weather sends critters to backyard feeders, birds and mammals alike. Mourning doves flutter in and explode away often, consuming large amounts of grain during their brief visits.

March is the most challenging time of year for deer, especially when snow cover restricts mobility and buries food. Deer browse woody plants in winter, but it doesn’t take long for this staple to disappear as well. A five to six foot “browse line”, evident on this Northern White-cedar, indicates that deer have eaten just about everything within reach.

The big picture: a late winter landscape in Central New York.

Photos by NB Hunter, 2019. © All rights reserved.

7 thoughts on “A Late Winter Blast

  1. Beautiful Nick, but it sure looks cold. Got down to 42 degrees F this morning and boy did I notice how cold it was riding my bike and exercising our dog. Can’t take the cold anymore, but really enjoy your beautiful photos. Please keep them coming.

    • Thanks Gloria. Sounds like you are doing well, staying active with a solid program in place. Good for you! The weather is supposed to take a turn for the better this weekend and it’s just a matter of time until spring events unfold.

  2. Your photographs are always a delight to behold. These are an interesting record of how the wildlife copes with extreme weather conditions.

  3. Brrrr… that sure does look cold. Can’t help but feel sorry for the deer. Found one trying to get into our suet feeder the other night, but it’s so tame I suspect neighbors are feeding it. I don’t think that’s a great idea. Are you getting that wasting disease in your area? I’m pretty sure I saw an example at a previous house.

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