Saturday, January 17, 2009

Always bring your camera

Never leave home without your camera. Especially if you are going into the woods because you never know when you might see something interesting. This is exactly what happened to me this afternoon. I was wandering around on some property south of the Saskatoon when, from a distance, I saw a large dark object in a tree. As I approached I realized that it was a porcupine. It had chosen to climb into a rather flimsy tree which was not much taller than I. He sat at eye level with me. From a short distance I could see him moving around and as I walked closer he stopped moving and just hung there, limp. I don't know if he was playing dead or just thought that if he were motionless that I wouldn't see him. Not wanting to disturb him too much I left him to his devices. Not far away I came across another, this time, about 40 feet up in a large pine tree.

Porcupines are known to climb trees in order to escape predators but they will also climb a tree to feed. In winter, they chew through the outer bark of various trees, to get at the inner bark. All the barkless patches on the trees in the vicinity shows that they've been feeding a lot.

Any way, if I would have had my camera with me I would have some photos to post here. Lesson learned.

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