Feathers and Fur – Part 1 of 2…by Brad Marks

Well, we are officially off to the West. During our absence, I am turning the keys to the Intrigued Headquarters over to Brad. He will be keeping you entertained while Linda and I quest for the Holy Grail…eh, more like a bird or two or fingers crossed 20. Figured this would be a perfect time to roll out one of his two-parters from probably my favorite destination – Yellowstone National Park. Enjoy!

Take it away Brad and remember, no mega-parties at HQ until AFTER the work is done …

Many years ago, our family (Jan, Allyson and I) took a trip to Yellowstone National Park.  You may remember me telling you that our daughter Allyson didn’t want to spend so much time looking at rocks in this prior post.  Based on the pushback from a tweenager, I only booked three nights at a lodge in the park, giving us two full days for exploring.  Accommodations inside the actual park are limited and usually fill up 8+ months in advance for summer visits.  Two full days is by no means an extensive amount of time in Yellowstone (we still drove hundreds of miles inside the park and barely saw anything, IMHO).  Taking the advice of a fellow traveler, photographer, and friend, we had flown into Salt Lake City and rented a car for the drive to Yellowstone.  Our trip was in early June, hoping to miss most of the tourists with their kids still in school.  We approached from the west entrance through West Yellowstone in Montana.  Literally within a few minutes of the park rangers checking our annual park pass, we stopped along the road and were greeted with this view.

Shots from Yellowstone National Park from Brad Marks

Hit the jump to read more about Brad’s Yellowstone experience.

Continue reading Feathers and Fur – Part 1 of 2…by Brad Marks

Standoff at the OK Blossom

We are two weeks away from this year’s annual Haunted Trail of Tears event and looking around the house as of late and you can definitely tell. Pretty sure every room in the house has some form of prop production happening. My brother Ron was nice enough to come down this weekend and help out designing and building some new additions. He brings the big guns when it comes to the difficult circuits and helps get me through the trouble spots that inevitably pop up. We put together some really nice new scares for the trail this year and cannot wait to see how they look in the dead of night – also vastly improved one of last year’s signature props (link here). Should be some great fun, but still a lot of work to make it to the finish line. Had a few minutes to relax a bit before calling it a weekend and decided to see if I could get a quick post out.

Monarch found at Rollins Savannah, Grayslake, IL in August 2021

In honor of Halloween, I am going to continue with the orange and black theme started in the last post. Giving you a break from the barrage of birds and bring you something a bit outside of my wheelhouse.

Monarch found at Rollins Savannah, Grayslake, IL in August 2021

Hit the jump to see some more shots of our autumn colored friend.

Continue reading Standoff at the OK Blossom

Does It Spy Eyes on the Side

Howdy friends! – hope everyone’s enjoying the Valentine’s Day weekend with their special someone’s.  I was just sitting here watching my 3D printer lay down some plastic when it occurred to me I could continue to be mesmerized by the print head moving back and forth along the pattern… or .. wait for it… be productive and crank out another post.  True to a fault, my brain usually comes down on the side of productivity – keeps bringing up the whole “you complain every month you don’t have your posts done” argument causing me to cave faster than it takes Hillary to open her mouth and issue a cackling lie.

Up to this point I’ve been showing you the frail and vulnerable side of Yellowstone National Park.  Today we take a different perspective – the deadly side.
Coyote on the hunt in Yellowstone National Park in May 2013

If you recall in the Yellowstone baby series, there was usually at least one adult keeping a watchful eye on the surroundings.  The Coyote above is a fine example of why they were keeping steadfast alert.  It should not be a surprise to anyone that reads this blog (or knows me personally) that Coyotes are not very popular in my parts of the woods.  We do not have Bears or Wolves in these parts of the Midwest which puts the Coyote at the top of the wildlife predator list.  This results in humans having to keep them in check or there wouldn’t be any bunnies or squirrels for counties.

Coyote on the hunt in Yellowstone National Park in May 2013

Hit the jump to see a couple more shots of this Coyote located out in Montana.

Continue reading Does It Spy Eyes on the Side

A Brazen One

Trying to get caught up here at Lifeintrigued.  After the huge outputs of the previous months, this one is off to a particularly slow start.  Part of this is due to focusing on bird processing over the last couple of months and not a lot of other image topics.  I have a ton of those shots ready to go to the show, but it is a tad rude to slight all those readers out there that prefer a little more variety in their blog topics.  This translates into digging into the backlog to find appropriate topics followed by the mandatory time in the digital darkroom.  If anything, this has forced me to get on the ball with the Yellowstone pictures from May 2013.  Yeah, yeah, trust me I am sufficiently shamed but comforting to know I have a huge backlog in the tin in case my brother starts getting to close to my bird count!

Today’s featured animal is one that isn’t on my favorites list.
A Coyote at Yellowstone National Park

There is no love in these parts for the Coyote especially if you have three poodles that don’t understand just how fragile (and tasty) they are compared to their fellow Genus Canis members. I actually thought that Coyotes descended directly from the Gray Wolf similar to our domestic dogs, but a little research – scratch that, a lot of time researching on the web proved me wrong – they are of the same Genus, but Wolves are of Canis lupus where Coyotes are of Canis latrans.  Regardless, if they show up at our door… they go by the word Dead.  However, out in Yellowstone I’m in their backyard and they deserve my respect.  Note, you may recognize the shot above as the one that got blanked out during the UB competition (link here) – a shame since I still really like it.

A Coyote at Yellowstone National Park

Hit the jump to see a few more pictures of this Coyote

Continue reading A Brazen One

A Bad Day to be a Shoveler

Greetings everyone. I am currently under the influence of my new deep tissue foot massager I just purchased with my 2nd place finish gift certificate (link here). As a result, I cannot be held accountable for the contents of this post because quite frankly, this feels quite yummy and might just dose off from time to time. Honestly, this thing is awesome! My main hope is it will help relieve some heel pain I’ve been dealing with since the Steamboat Race. A fellow runner at work recommended it so figured I’d give it a go00…zzzzzzzz … Sorry, dozed a bit.

Today we are back at the Henderson Nevada Bird Viewing Preserve, but this time our primary subject doesn’t come with feathers or a beak. Turns out we were greeted with another resident in the area, one we were admittedly not expecting in the least.

Surprise! This Coyote crept up on us mid-morning while we were heading out to an observation platform built on one of the Henderson ponds. We were checking out some birds hanging out on one side of the raised walkway oblivious to the fact this natural born killer was stalking us from the other side. The color palette of this creature blended perfectly into the surroundings and if it wouldn’t have moved slightly I would have likely never seen it. Before the Beast could draw a bead on it (and thanks to taking the time to excitedly explain my find to Linda), the Coyote slinked back into the brush. Curious we started tracking it from the platform where it eventually popped into view again having traversed directly under it. Probably less than 20 yards away, it turned back at us – standing its ground against our unappreciated intrusion.

As you can tell, it seemed truly pissed off! A quick look around confirmed we were the only ones out in preserve at the time which gets you to wondering if you were “take out” that day. This was going to be a little difficult if that was the intent because it didn’t appear to be “packing” – as in there wasn’t any other pack mates in the vicinity and it wasn’t sporting a holster we could see. In my excitement I failed to really take in the composition of the shot. 5 feet to the left would have helped the shots tremendously – note to self, composition, composition composition. This Coyote would walk a few feet, look back at us, walk a few feet, look back at us, veer off in a different direction, look back, return to the original direction and look back. This was getting pretty weird. Eventually it found its way behind a thick brush concealing most of what it was doing. All we could tell was that it was digging in the ground. A few minutes later it revealed its motivation.

Hit the jump to reveal the mystery

Continue reading A Bad Day to be a Shoveler

An Odor Found

If you recall from the end of my last post, Operation Parkify, I drew your attention to some tree branches overhanging the stream.  It might have even made you wonder why I would leave those branches hanging over the stream if my intent was to beautify the surroundings.  Well, there are two reasons for that.  One is to help prevent unwanted trees and limbs from making their way down to another project I’ll be posting on in the future.  The other is due to what was found on those branches.  I am only going to put this particular picture on the front of this post and let you make your own decision whether you want to figure out what is in it and whether you want to take the jump to see the better pictures.  Warning, not for the squeamish.

Sooooo, if you want to see more, hit the jump

Continue reading An Odor Found