Happy Winter Solstice

It’s been so very busy  lately that I haven’t had much time to update my blog.  We received about a foot of new snow last night, so this morning Markus and I headed out to take some snow pictures.  We found these Bison and thought they were beautiful wearing their snow coats…_Z3A6029-2_Z3A6070-2_Z3A6081-2

Aurora Borealis Dancing Across the Sky…

On the early morning of November 3, the sky came to life and the aurora borealis danced across the sky…IMG_3470

First hints of the northern lights…IMG_3484

Then they sprang to life!  We could even see color with the naked eye…IMG_3508 IMG_3523-2

The above picture I even caught a meteor from the beginnings of the Taurid shower…IMG_3505-2 IMG_3542 IMG_3532

Still dancing as I headed inside for the night, outside the bedroom window…IMG_3544

Northern Harrier…

We watched this Northern Harrier several times making our way through Mormon Row in the mornings.  She would swoop and dive crazily after her prey and flew unlike any other hawk we have seen…IMG_0020 IMG_0021

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Cool Facts

  • Northern Harriers are the most owl-like of hawks (though they’re not related to owls). They rely on hearing as well as vision to capture prey. The disk-shaped face looks and functions much like an owl’s, with stiff facial feathers helping to direct sound to the ears.
  • Juvenile males have pale greenish-yellow eyes, while juvenile females have dark chocolate brown eyes. The eye color of both sexes changes gradually to lemon yellow by the time they reach adulthood.
  • Male Northern Harriers can have as many as five mates at once, though most have only one or two. The male provides most of the food for his mates and their offspring, while the females incubate the eggs and brood the chicks.
  • Northern Harriers hunt mostly small mammals and small birds, but they are capable of taking bigger prey like rabbits and ducks. They sometimes subdue larger animals by drowning them.
  • Northern Harrier fossils dating from 11,000 to 40,000 years ago have been unearthed in northern Mexico.
  • The oldest Northern Harrier on record was 15 years, 4 months old when it was captured and released in 2001 by a bird bander in Quebec.
  • For more information, please visit here…

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