To all my Fotki friends....All is well in south Texas. The Eagleford Shale has consumed much of my time in the oil field, but I look forward to updating this site with some recent images that I hope You will enjoy...lt
I'm HOME....got here last nite with out a clutch in the little PU...and ranout of gas down 187 in the Woodley country...but I'm home !! Thanks for all the comments and support...I will begin to go thru images tommorrow....lt
Putting in some late niters....called in 2 yotes last nite at a water lot. We are going to shoot the moon tonight with the old spanish ruins in the foreground.....called in a set of Great Horned owls the past 2 mornings..really cool...No question we're both dead tired...I could sleep for a week and not look back....There will be no more journal entries till next week when I get home...Lord willing...returning the aircard to McAllen this morning....va con Dios..lt
Called up a Blue Groesbeak this morning with a song bird call off the ipod. Found fresh coon tracks at a small watering hole,set a trail camera, and baited.....tick tock tick tock!! Mammals aren't very plentiful. Spent a large part of the afternoon looking for bobcat scat on the main roads in the Lobitas pasture.....found none.....Tommorrows another day...Oh ya...lost a coachwhip in the frontyard of the camp....bummer..lt
Greetings.....We are still kick'in. Camped over at Alta Vista for a couple of days....No phone service...much less internet. Al managed to sit for about 6 hrs. at the San Xavier Ruins, and got a couple yotes and cara cara. Actually saw 2 cottontails, but didn't manage to get any photos. Photographed a Pauraque tonite....well look it up.....I did!!! Spotlighted a big yote, but No coons or rabbits. We're down to the last week....and I must say.....I'm EXHAUSTED.....lost about 12 lbs. so far....and counting...but i needed to....I know....lt
Got a late start over to Alta Vista....up all morning ....2am to 6am...shooting skunk......Had a beautiful Kestrel Hawk on the lane out of the ranch. Over to Kathleen's (Alta Vista) we met Her son Kevin, and the 4 of us set off to visit a ruin site on the extreme southeast corner of the ranch. Kevin relayed the story, that two of the earliest known settlements, in what is now know as Texas, were Alta Vista, and San Javier. Well, Kathleen's home is the original site of the town of Alta Vista, and now we were going to the original settlement of San Javier,built sometime in the 1700's. Kevin told me that the area was the thickest on the ranch, that Kathleen had photographed bobcat kittens in the ruins some years back. and that there was plenty up and down. Well, the ruins were awesome.two adjoing walls still stand with 2 windows, with wooden jams. The limestone rock crumbles a bit now due to the living trees and shrub growing thru it. But to think this was built some 250 years ago....simply amazing. The walls and a well are on the high ground. but, down the hill there stands another well which seems to house various varmints, and an aqua duct , also made from limestone and mud, that connected the hand dug well with a holding tank, some 100' away. Simply amazing.Kevin said that before they brought a dozer in to "Cleanup" around the site....the ruins were "invisable", because of the dense foliage. Pictures will be coming when time permits......Not alot of wildlife photos shot, but definitely an opportunity to capture the rich history of the Alta Vista, and the San Javier ruins.....priceless!!..lt
More rain this evening....coming from the north now. Well...I must tell you that, luck is a big part of nature photography.....The buck that we were told about day before yesterday.....we found him this morning....and in yellow flowers to boot !! Watched scissors tails hitting a pond this afternoon, taking a bath I guess...pretty cool. Snakes seem to be moving...3 rattlers, 1 Bull snake this evening. Getting ready to go up to "Sacatones" windmill and shoot toads tonite, singing in a small pond....Headed to Kathleens tommorrow for a coon I hope...lt
Haveing a little trouble getting internet signal...lots of clouds.....and I'm struggling with the early morning "Skunk" watch!!! So much for yesterday...after hearing from Dick Jones that he had seen a good buck with horns the day before...I put out a little "Bait" around the Charco Nueva windmill.....took Al this morning on a "slow ride " in the mule......and wha la....nice buck in the flowers no less !!! Pretty late to still have horns. Still agonizing over the lack of mammals....maybe our weakest catagory. Al is wanting to go over to Rancho Alta Vista tommorrow.....maybe we'll make a hamburger run!!!!...lt
15 days down and 15 days to go!! Will we win? The question is "Will We survive?"If its not rattlesnakes or scorpions, yesterday while weedeating around camp, africanized bees drove us inside for several hours. We each got stung 4-5 times,around the face!! Later , I found that they are living in the same house that we are, and that they REALLY don't like weedeaters!There is an exterminator coming this morning. The rains have brought the toads out, and they are great, we've shot 2 species so far. Among yesterdays shots, a Hooded Oriole, a Cactus Wren, Summer Tanger (male & female together) , and a Blue Grosbeak. We were invited to Headquarters last nite for dinner. Al provided the entertainment with several slide shows including Alaska, the Polar Bears, and a folder that I shot of things on the "Ranch". The food was excellent.....and the good Lord knew ...We needed it!! I'm baiting a skunk each nite with sardines, Al gets up on the odd hours, and I check for her on the evens...I'm getting a little old for that nonsense....but she seems to be getting somewhat more accustomed to us. We also shot the largest Wolfe spider I have ever seen...3" in diameter...lt
Oh well.....got up this morning on the hour to look for a beautiful skunk...while we were looking for the skunk...I spotted a coon...ran out to the mule to get my binoculars...and pulled a muscle in my calf......ice every hour...spent the day at camp trying to keep off of it....Al spent the morning shooting yotes...this evening got a nice summer tanger male, and a HUGE toad....rained again today...around 5" so far, but the sand here makes getting around fairly easy.....Go Tea Party'ers...lt
RAIN....More rain.....probably another couple of inches. Water was over the Hwy. 1017 north of Agua Nueva when I went into Hebbronville this afternoon. Al spent all afternoon on a coyote "site". Good stuff ! I saw what I think was my first official coon sighting, and a skunk as well.....Oh ya.....my bathroom has a tub shower...right...so I'm in there sudzing up when I look down in the tub, and about 3" from my heel is a nice plump stinging scorpion...I told Al we ought to shoot her in the tub....obviously her natural enviorment!...lt
BIG rain here today...2"....The ranch gathered 900 head of heifers via helicopter, and sorted ala weight. Shot all the cowboys till about noon, and then the bottom fell out....soaked like a rat, I loaded up on the "mule" and made the 5 mi. trek in the rain to our "lobitos" camp house. After a light 2 hr. nap, we shot a Black widow again, a 5' Bull snake, and various "watcha macallits". The coyotes still elude me. I went up in the helicopter this morning and after about 10 min. NOTHING! Lightning and rain put me back on the ground! The fresh scat and the continous howls keep me interested...it WILL happen....just have to let it happen! Shot a Lessser Yellow Leg, early this morning...can't wait to see what comes our way mannana....lt
Yesterday was pretty much a bust....made two pretty good cat sets...no bananna. Today we went over to Alta Vista Ranch, made a few calls with NO results, but on the way back to HQ, we passed by a little pond. Baby blue Heron, cattle egrets, and a family of Blue Wing Teal, not to mention 2 turkey toms just passing thru! Finished the evening with a lovely black widow spider. If you haven't yet, you might be interested in the pics on face book....lt
Whatever you do, don't think of me as one of those tree huggin naturalist....Al asked me to "bottleup" a blackwidow this afternoon, and my reply was..."just shoot it...so I can put my #10 on it" Spiders still give me the creeps!
Lesson learned for the day.." Looking for a Blackwidow?...Always, Always, look for an old tire!" Some things never change. Pretty slow day after yesterday. Beginning to think about bobcats...and where to call, wind , sun, and all that technical stuff. The female yotes are denned up about to have litters, as well as the cats, only difference is, toms don't help feed the female,as the dogs do.
Visited with Harwell Davis tonight....He shared all His secrets about cats and yotes.
If you have a trail cam that works well, and You like it....send me some info....I've got 5 going everyday...and its like being married to 5 women at the same time! Tomorrow is another day.....check out the photos on facebook..lt
Big Day.....Al has been bedded up by a windmill pond ALL DAY....cara cara, coyote, and all those "watcha macalits"...Photographed two Horny Toads at luch...lt
Egrets with plumage....garter snakes....and roadrunners....just another day in South Texas!! Under the title of "Things I learned today".....when putting a somewhat active snake into your wifes pillow case...be extremely carefull...He may bite you....ask Al.
3 more coyotes today....and not one will stop at a call....this is beginning to get to me. One week down...3 more to go !...lt
A little R&R never hurt anyone....Annalee drove into Laredo this evening, and I met Her at the "La Pasada" hotel on the river....let me warn You about the "Tack Room", if your not serious about steak....go to McDonalds...if You are ...just visit the "Tack Room"....and You won't be dissappointed.Call me for more instructions!! Al shot a Red Leg Stilt this morning....the wind is blowing like CRAZY....we also saw 4 coyotes this morning, but I never got their attention with a call...lt
The Alta Vista Ranch.....well the turkeys were incredible......3 gobblers in full strut, morning and evening. My first time to fill a 16 gig card in one day!! Thats 787 images for those that don't speak the lingo. Needless to say, We have quite a few turkey images!! Oh Ya....Kathleen cooked dove and pork tenderloin for lunch.....I may get spoiled.Check out the facebook image of the two gobblers!!!...lt
Foggy, with a hint of mist, the morning was not to wanno for photography. Have You ever looked for something so hard, and couldn't find it, inspite of how hard You looked? Spent 4hrs. today making a run on the mule, trying to find a buck with horns. We saw alot of deer, but, NO Cuatas. Al and I got back to camp around 7:45 pm, to find a buck and 4 or 5 does, grazing in the back yard of the camp house. Well, there You go! Al shot wildflowers during midday, while I checked trail cameras and bait sites. Have You ever been excited about cat scat? Finally, have some at a bait site...thats a good thing. Looking forward to spending Easter Sunday with Kathleen, on the Alta Vista Ranch......Turkeys beware!
Have a wonderful Easter...May God Bless..lt
A good day....a whitetail with "Horns"...a few turkey gobblers....10 javelinas with a baby...and few whatch-a-macalits. Aunt Kathleen invited Al and I for lunch, venison chili, salad, and jalapeno cornbread....We needed a home cooked meal...We spent most of the afternoon with Kathleen, driving around the Alta Vista looking at the array of wildflowers, and the vast number of varieties. Made a long corn run this evening that produced a baby javelina.28 days and counting...lt
OH Ya...there is a new hole in the hwy. fence where some ten dope runners ran thru it in a ford pickup last nite, while being chased by the Bordor Patrol....What happens to the ones that get away I asked..."Dehydration or the rattlesnakes will get'em most of the time"....lt
Al and I are beginning the second day of the contest...30 days seems like a long time...We are desperately looking for some bucks with horns..cuatas are literally falling by the hour!! Once the wind began to shift from the southeast, the rattlers began to move...photographed a 5-1/2 footer yesterday. The wind is unbelievable. Hard to shoot any of the wild flowers.....lt
Under the "what I learned today"...."Don't sit down by rattlesnakes"
The tundra in Denali was unbelievable. The first morning saw temperatures down around 14. It snowed 3 days, and 3 days the mountain was open. Flying to the summit and through the summit was an absolute kick. McKinley is the most awesome thing I have ever witnessed. For those of you from Texas, who think every thing is BIG in Texas....Plan a visit to Alaska...you'll then understand what BIG is!!
Began planning trip to Denali ,in mid August.
Flying in to Anchorage, then by train to Denali.
Plan on spending 10 days with Al Perry.