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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

ERIC P. ORFF
Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983
nhfishandwildlif@aol.com

NH Nature

New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff

Monday 02/28/2011 Counting down the days of winter.

Good old sol is slowly, ever so slowly it seems, melting winter away. Each day is a little longer and more able to loosen the grasp of winter. March is at hand and spring springs fourth this month. But we really are still stuck in winter. Just when it seemed last week that the snow was settling and I could actually glimpse a bare spot of ground on the steep southern slopes, and wang we got almost another foot Friday. Gee it seems like there will be no end to this winter.

The deep snow has really put this state's wildlife on the edge of survival. I'm getting reports of bobcats moving into town this winter. Typical for a winter such as this. Under porches and in garages are common places for a bobcat to end up in winters like this. They also head into town to enjoy the bounty of the bird feeders. Not the seeds but the prey brought to these feeders. I have always said we have two shifts at our bird feeders. During the day it is the birds and gray squirrels that are common. But let the sun dip below the horizon and bring on the second shift, mice and flying squirrels. Perfect prey for a starving bobcat. Not to mention the fat house cats skulking around these same feeders.

The Suncook River is totally frozen into a winter's slumber out my home office winter. Up river this winter has been a flock of mallards in the open water by Short Falls. And I have been watching them dine on the huge cow manure pile thankfully under construction in the nearby snow covered corn field. Yes critters will do what they must to survive including gleaning undigested corn from the manure pile. Turkeys are well know to flock to the piles in the winter and some may be critical for their winter survival. But this years ducks were a first for me. I have seen a few, very few, deer tracks the last week or two. Maybe the settling snow will give them a break to move a little. No doubt in my mind much of this state's wildlife has taken a hit this winter. We sure need a real turn in the weather to give them a break.


   

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