Tag: Mountain lions

Summertime Brings Changes to the Canyon Wildlife

Three trail cameras continue to film wildlife and human activity in an undeveloped 88-acre canyon. This canyon is ideal for observing wildlife responses to  changes—it’s surrounded on all sides by businesses, roads and homes. For more than three years the cams have recorded how the suburban canyon wildlife reacts to the pressures of urbanization and […]

A Snapshot of Wildlife in the Canyon: Fall of 2020

Two bucks fighting

My favorite canyon is only 90 acres in size; it’s surrounded by buildings, roads and all the trappings of urbanization. Despite its tiny size and suburban location, it is rich with many species of wild animals and native plants—it is a complex, working eco-system where all the players are interconnected. Three trail cameras faithfully document […]

The World Turned Upside Down

George Tuck

I owe all of you an explanation. For understandable reasons I lost my writing mojo for about six months. Covid-19 didn’t help the situation and neither did the recent devastating fires that caused me, along with thousands of other people to evacuate out of our homes in the mountains. I’m thankful that the gorgeous redwoods […]

September Videos and Pictures

Mountain lion

There seems to be less wildlife in the canyon this month. It could be a natural cycle or it might be caused by destruction that is occurring in part of the habitat. Mountain lion This large male puma is a regular visitor to the canyon–he shows up about every two to three months. This time […]

Life Stories of Two Canyon Mountain Lions

Mountain lion #2 walking the trail

Today’s a sad day. Another mountain lion died, hit by a vehicle not too far from the canyon. I’m worried that the victim may be the big male we’ve been monitoring on the canyon trail since early this year. The one who died tried to cross the freeway at 10:00 Friday night. Perhaps the lion […]

Rat Poisons Aren’t Selective

San Mateo, California is an affluent, suburban community where residents enjoy mild weather and amenities such as up-scale restaurants and specialty shops. In addition to people, common rats also enjoy living the good life here. They’ve adapted well to the near-perfect climate all year round and the gourmet food that is just a short scurry […]

Dusky-Footed Woodrats Help Save a Canyon

Woodrat homes are elaborate with multiple stories and an abundance of rooms that include resting chambers, nurseries and pantries.

I’ve never been particularly partial to rodents who resemble rats. In fact, I try to avoid them. That changed after one of my wildlife cameras filmed a number of surprisingly adorable, industrious little rodents gathering sticks and leaves late at night. This was my first introduction to the fascinating dusky-footed woodrat. (Neotoma fuscipes). These little […]

Our Wildlife Cameras Record Everything

Puma cubs playing during the day.

Finally it’s the beginning of summer and the trails are alive with activity—human and animal. Our wildlife cameras are capturing it all, including those changes that are caused by natural seasonal cycles as well as adaptations in animal behavior that are likely influenced by people out on the trails day and night. Summer changes The […]

A Diversity of Animals Share a Popular Trail

Bobcats use the trail on a regular basis.

Camera #4 films the most activity of the 6 cameras I’m monitoring. It’s located in an ideal spot for sighting animals—on a trail that follows a creek at the bottom of a lush canyon. A wide diversity of wildlife and humans use this trail 24 hours a day. I understand—it meanders through a cool forest […]

Long Distance Relationships with the Local Wildlife

Lion walking the trail.

Our trail cameras have spied on a rich array of wildlife, including bobcats, foxes, mountain lions, coyotes and deer. Many of them are regulars—repeatedly visiting the cameras for the last 6 months.  I’ve gradually learned to recognize individuals. Through recognition comes attachment—I confess that I’ve named some of them. These 4-legged visitors have great reasons […]