Sharp-tailed Grouse…

Sunday morning my husband and myself, along with some friends arose at 4:30 am to be at a Sharp-tailed Grouse lek an hour before sunrise…

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Arriving an hour before sunrise with stars still in the sky and a start to a beautiful day…

People wishing to view sharpies dancing must arrive at the lek an hour before sunrise in order not to disturb the grouse.

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Beautiful sunrise on the lek…

The mating routine of Sharp-tailed Grouse involves males displaying communally at a traditional site (one used year after year). This site is known as a “lek.” Males compete for mates by performing a ritualized dance in conjunction with calling (often a booming sound) and inflating purplish air sacs along their necks. Females approach the edge of the lek, observe and eventually select a dance participant to mate with.

Male grouse hold territories on the lek with the dominant male usually claiming the most central position. The central male also normally mates with the most females. In general, a male’s success at attracting females is highly correlated with his position on the lek. This leads to relatively few males siring most of the young.

Above information from here…

Here are just a few pictures from that morning…

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Vacation…

 

We are back after a 15 day vacation.  My husband had a business meeting in Seattle so we (the whole family plus Grammy ~ 10 people in all) spent a couple of days hanging around there and then we crossed on the ferry and started our Highway 101 adventure!  We toured through parts of Olympic National Park and then followed the coast down to San Francisco and then cut across California, Nevada and Idaho to make it back to Bozeman, MT just in time for my husband to have another business meeting then headed home.  This is one of the thousands of pictures I took on our little trip and was taken in Olympic National Park….

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Little Monkey’s in Lamar Valley…

A couple weeks ago we were able to go with my husband on one of his trips and spent a couple days in Bozeman, MT.  Our last day there we decided to spend an extra night and do a quick tour through Yellowstone the next day…

Here are the kiddos stretching their legs and doing a bit of balancing in Lamar Valley…

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Some of the other sites around Lamar Valley…

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