critters in the semi-wild


Up above is a shot of several logs in a small inlet on Lake Johnson near Raleigh NC. Each log has a multitude of turtles on it--and my movement towards them already had a number slipping off into the water.

This picture was taken after I'd gotten closer, but also had scared off quite a few of the turtles. Only the braves ones were left--but since there's a limit on bravery in animals that don't want to end up in the stewpot, by the time I'd circled the tree on the left side of the picture all the remaining turtles had dove in the water.

However I did meet one fellow that was braver than the turtles. You can take a gander at him in the picture below...



Isn't he a cutie? My girlfriend hates snakes for some reason--at least when they're close up. I tell her it's Freudian but she keeps trying to prove me wrong on that score.

I only have a 3X zoom so I had to be pretty close to this snake. I wanted to get a little closer but I'm not like that insane Australian fellow on Animal Planet--crikey!--so I settled for this picture here.

Unless you really don't like snakes, click on this picture to see it larger. This is really a pretty snake. From what I've read, it's either a Northern Watersnake or a Redbelly Watersnake. It's not an easy ID for me since the juvenile snakes have a different appearance than the adult--and several species will interbreed so this snake could be the product of different types of snakes. The snake appeared to be a little over 2 feet long outside the water and a significant portion seemed to still be in the water.

Here's a picture not of an animal but what the animal did.

When you see damage to the bark of a tree like this, it usually means that a porcupine was working it over. They'll often go after manmade wooden structures also. I remember as a kid, there was one that would go after the wood of one of our garage doors every spring. It would only attack the left door and always left the right hand one alone. Weird.

That's how I spent my Saturday morning. What did y'all do?

BTW, the UNC game is on at 4pm and it's 3pm now so it's time to get fattening snacks ready!

Comments

Nic said…
I can do without snakes. *SHUDDERS*. My Saturday morning was spent meeting my former sister-in-law and her husband at IHOP for breakfast with my duaghter. We're still super close and my daughter just LOVES them but they moved several hours away so we always find time to be with them when they're in town.

Hi from Michele's.
T. said…
Hello! Michele sent me. Great pics! My kids loved them.
ribbiticus said…
i'm glad you didn't get any closer, utenzi. getting bitten by a snake while trying to sneak a shot wouldn't have been worth it - nosiree. great pics! :)
Mark said…
Fun pictures! I'll be in NC next weekend... hiking the AT starting at Fontana Dam.

My Saturday morning was spent leading Milwaukee's annual St. Patrick's Day Parade! Thanks for asking. :)

I'm here via Michele's btw...
vanx said…
I grew up on the Passaic River in New Jersey. Totally polluted in the 1960s, but a turtle nest of snakes nonetheless.
My Saturday morning was the usual Dad's Limo trip. You win!
Hi Michele sent me....

Love those pictures....

How amazing to see all of those turtles and a snake all at once!! A very busy lake!
Pearl said…
Sounds like a great use of a Saturday morning. I like the snake. Can't say I was so adventurous. Just a library run.
Teresa said…
I'm not a fan of snakes either. It may be Freudian, but I think it's more that they aren't predictable in their movement. You can keep them -- far away from me.

My morning wasn't nearly so adventuresome. I did a bit of bookkeeping for my taxes and then went to bed. I slept pretty well. Though it was a beautiful morning an an outdoor activity would have been nice, I'm happy with my choice of activity. :-)
Swell pictures Utenzi...Love those little guys and the snake, too...

I slept in this morning...been pretty tired....But it's a beautioful COLD 9For L.A. day here...it was supposed to rain realkly really hard...and it still may, I guess...but right now, the wind has cleared out any smog that might have been hanging...and I tell you it is VERY VERY cold, for here....
jude said…
Thanks for the nature walk tonight! Here from michele's tonight..
Courtney said…
Happy Saturday!
Michele sent me.
Goofy Girl said…
Cool pics!!! I like all the little turtles, they were very cute, I hope they made it to land safetly.

The little snake was cute too I don't know if I would have gotten that close though. Brave you!

Interesting with the tree and the porcupine, I didnt know they did that
Lazy Daisy said…
Michele sent me, loved the pictures but I agree that snakes aren't my favorite! You are braver than I am!
dena said…
I love catching a bunch of turtles on a log. I hate disturbing them, but it's pretty hard not to when you want to get a good picture.
Cool snake. He must have been enjoying the warmth Virginia and Carolina have been experiencing. And thanks for sharing the porcupine story - that was a new one for me.

michele sent me.
Michelle said…
AAwwwwwwwww..i love turtles, they are too cute :)

Crikey!! That sure was a decent sized snake.
I saw a baby taipan (worlds most deadliest snake) in my garden yesterday. It was eating a small lizard, i went to get the 7 iron i use to play toad golf, and when i returned it was gone! I hope it went next door!
Michelle said…
Me again! Just read the link you provided for me. Thanks so much for that. I understand much better now. The dogs you call Aussie Shepards, we call them 'Border Collies". They are used here to round up sheep/cattle on stations and farms. Fantastic working dog, very trainable and loyal.
Shane said…
it's funny to imagine turtles scurrying off.

looks like a fun walk.

cheers from Michele's

Shane
kenju said…
Love the turtle pics.

We spent the day with 2 of our grandchildren. First we saw the St. Patrick's Day parade downtown and then we went to the Natural Science Museum to see the reptile and amphibian exhibit. So you see - I saw snakes, frogs and turtles today too! We saw a snapping turtle weighing 165 pounds and he was 150 years old.
Oreo said…
Hi Utenzi...I followed you home from Michele's. Mom says I can't stay though, she would miss me....
....
what a great post....
over from the other Michele's
Becky said…
cool pics...thanks for the words of encouragement....here via michele....so far i have walked every day and the eating thingy well im trying...lol
Kat said…
I love the turtle pictures!!! I'm so jealous that you have that kind of proximity to wildlife. When I look outside my window I see a bunch of buildings and the patios behind them.
mar said…
Great pics but I skipped the part where I kind of detected a snake....! It was intersting to read about a porcupine, I have never seen something like that damaged tree. Michele sent me your way, Utenzi. To thank you for your nice words, the blog design isn't mine but you can see the credits towards the end of the side bar. Remember the shades hide all wrinkles, lol!
Le laquet said…
Excellent photos ~ are the turtles indigenous? I too have buildings outside the back door ... you're very lucky! Michele sent me to say hello!
sophie said…
Very cool about the porcupines.....must not be any where I hang out....
colleen said…
I didn't realize you were so close to me in Virgina. We just got back from a week of camping on Huntington Island in SC.

I've never seen so many turtles congregating together like that!

Hello from michele's.

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