Read Homestead Wildlife


Birds Arachnids Insects Amphibians Mammals




While trimming trees to make more sunlight for the melon patch, I noticed a hummingbird circling Wade.  We finally realized that we must be close to her nest...which we were!  Needless to say, we couldn't cut down that branch.






This is a baby Cooper's Hawk that we carefully, at Wade's peril, climbing a ladder with the bird then placing it back in its nest.  The Cooper's Hawk is recently downgraded from the endangered species list to the threatened list.


    (Google image: )



Barn owl (before the barn demolition, of course)




Little screech owl in our attic.  He makes the strangest little birdy sound.  No hooting for him.




This "little" guy, likely an Orb-Weaver, decided to weave a web right in the path to the cars.  I nearly wet myself when I found this spider right in front of my face!  She stayed with us for about 5 days.


I was especially anxious when I saw her abdomen...too similar to the black widow.



These black and yellow argiopes love to spin their webs in the vegetable garden.




I don't even remember where we found this miniscule arachnid.  The geeks at the insect Yahoo! group identified this as a pseudoscorpion.  They normally live in the tropics, but can live in our area too.




While driving past a tree one day, I saw something strange on a trunk.  Imagine my surprise to see these two mammoths mating.  With a wingspan of 5 to 6 inches, the cecropia moth (Hyalophora cecropia) is the largest North American moth, and commonly referred to as silkworm moths.  They apparently mate for an entire day, lay their eggs, then go off to die.  How depressing is that?  And stay they did...all day...despite the fact that I mowed all around that tree.  By the way, that's a quarter for size comparison.



  Here's a camera phone picture of them mating.  The female is on the right with its bulbous abdomen.





We tend to get a lot of amphibians in the basement during the summer months: toads, frogs and salamanders.  If we don't rescue them right away, they die due to the lack of moisture and food.






Henry, my "pet" chipmunk.  Likely, "Henry" has been many chipmunks over the years and even a Henrietta or two, but any chipmunk I see eating on the stoop is called Henry.

One year I actually saw the Cooper's hawk swoop down and try to eat Henry, only to fly into the window as Henry scurried away.




Mink.  Yes, I typed that right.  A mink.  Who'd a thunk?  We don't even live near water.




Speaking of the weasel family, we encountered a little lesser weasel caught in bird netting.  The picture looks ominous, but after a strong effort on Wade's part, we were able to free this little guy so he could eat some of those mice out there.  The picture's a bit cloudy because my camera lens fogged up during the transition from air conditioned space to the 80% humidity of outside.






No, deer aren't unique, but how often do you get to see a pair in your back yard?




    And, of course the standards...


Squirrels 13 lined ground squirrels Raccoons Opossums Skunks
Tries to live in our attic Makes holes and mounds all over the lawn that I trip on Threatens the dogs and eats our garbage Eats our garbage Eats our garbage and...PEWWW!



And mice/voles/shrews...ick.  Why can't they just leave us alone?





These are, as of yet, unidentified.  Any clues?