Getting outside again

I finally did something outdoorsy this week.  Went to school on Sunday, but not before I went for a walk through the Lady Eaton drumlin next to the campus.

Unknown kill.  Pigeon feathers?

Birding in Presqu'ile Provincial Park

Sorry for the delay, but here are the photos from last Sunday when I was birding at Presqu'ile Provincial Park with Trent's ornithology class.

Waking up early and waiting for the school bus just after 6am.


Musk-oxen in Ivvavik National Park! Amazing!

Despite only a few glimpses of the caribou migration this year, this year's wildlife viewing was honoured by the presence of Musk-ox (Ovibos moschatus) near our campsite.  Musk-oxen are usually found in high arctic islands and very rarely ventured down south into the treelines.  However, for some unknown reason, this herd of seven adults and one calf came to our campground in the first week of June and stayed around for at least for a week.

Lots of photos below, just a heads-up.

Musk-ox (Ovibos moschatus)
They were first spotted by an elder in our group.  On the first day (June 9th), they were on the other side of the creek and up the hill.


White Underwing moth (Catocala relicta)

It was rainy and windy here in Peterborough yesterday.  While working in my office, I noticed a large moth outside my window.  I decided to retrieve it out of the rain and wind and bring it back into the office.  It was very pretty and fluffy, and so I brought it home with me to take a few photos of it.

Here are some photos that I took last night.  This morning, with the weather being sunny, I brought the moth back to campus and released it.

White Underwing Moth (Catocala relicta)
Photo taken with the Raynox 250 attached to the Olympus 40-150mm.  I made some mistakes in the previous posts saying it was the Raynox 150, sorry.


Visitng Riverview Park and Zoo for the second time

I biked to school early this morning to meet with my supervisor to talk about a potential paper that we can write.  In the afternoon, since I didn't bring the power cord for my laptop to school today, I had to go back home early once the battery was drained.  When I bike to school, I have to pass through the Riverview Zoo, so I decided to stop at the zoo today and take some photos.

Serval cats (Leptailurus serval) enjoying the afternoon sun.


Sneaking nature outing into a busy life

Almost a week has gone by without me taking any photos.  Life has been just incredibly busy with my data analysis, teaching assistantship (teaching R program to undergraduates and graduates.  How on earth did I end up with this gig!?), among many other things.

Anyways, I went out for a short bike ride on Saturday after spending most of my day inside the house.

Young Waxwings on tree tops.


Photos of Ivvavik from the air

Here are some of the landscape photos that I took in Ivvavik National Park.  There are many more after this batch.

May 29, 2012 - second (and successful) attempt to fly into Ivvavik.  The first and follow-up tries didn't go so well.

Mackenzie Delta


Porcupine caribous in Ivvavik National Park - 2012

This is my second and final year at Trent for my Masters program, and hopefully I will complete my thesis before next summer.  The point is that I will probably be very busy and won't have much time to do any "fun" stuff.

Anyways, this field season, the caribou migration did not go through Sheep Creek like last year.  Instead, we only saw a few stragglers, and some lucky people got a chance to see parts of the massive migration during times of day when most people are sleeping.  The migration still occurred (on other parts of the massive migration pattern) but just not in front of our eyes.

Porcupine caribous (Rangifer tarandus granti)
We only saw a few at the beginning of June.

Porcupine caribou migration (Rangifer tarandus granti)
Then returning caribous with calves towards the end of June.

Only two decent photos from this entire field season.  Bummer.


Caterpillar, Bee, and Rainbow Sunday

Today is International Rock Flipping Day (9/9).  I flipped some rocks behind my office building this afternoon, but it seemed too disturbed (basically a gravel mound from recent constructions) to have much biodiversity.  Too bad.  I did saw some ants and tiny tiny critters though, underneath the rocks, but that was about it.

Saw this pretty caterpillar on my way out of the building.


Dall sheep of Ivvavik National Park - 2012

I didn't take a whole lot of sheep photos this year (last year's sheep post), probably because they were everywhere this year, particularly when they were outside the tents while us humans were inside sleeping.  It was a rude awakening for sure.

All of these photos came one day, just past midnight, while I was heading to bed.  A large group of sheep were passing through behind the garage shed and some were standing on top of the dirt mounds.  The lighting wasn't the greatest at that time since the hill blocked out the sun but nonetheless I got some nice photos to share with you.

Dall sheep (Ovis dalli)


Ground squirrels from Ontario...and then Yukon

Yesterday, a chubby Groundhog (Marmota monax) ran across the sidewalk in front of me while I was going up to my office.  It always takes a while for my brain to process what I am seeing, especially for animals rarely encountered.  At first I thought it was a badger, then a large muskrat, and eventually my brain settled on Mormota sp., the most sensible and logical choice.  Plus it looks awfully like the Hoary marmot that I saw in Yukon.



Mystery death of a Cuckoo Leafcutting Bee

Yesterday, after working from my office for a while, I went out behind the office building and looked for wildlife. First creature I saw was this Metallic Green Bee (Genus Agapostemon) visiting these aster flowers.

Love its colour.


Complete Rainbow(s) in Ivvavik

In the early morning of June 10th, 2012, I was outside my tent and saw a beautiful (almost?) double rainbow across our field site.  I grabbed my P&S camera and took several photos.  I just stitched them today using a free software called Microsoft ICE, and it actually worked better than the program I have been using.

(Double?) Rainbow Across the Sky

What a gorgeous sight (and site)!  I think Yukon and NWT have produced some of the most spectacular rainbows I have ever seen in my life, or maybe it is just because the landscape the rainbow bridges (for example).  Since this summer was my second field season, I doubt I will ever come back again.  Quite sad to think about, actually.


Bridgenorth Trail & Miller Creek Cons. Area revisited

Last year, I biked to a nearby conservation area called Miller Creek.  However, the biking was not as safe I preferred since I was basically biking on a busy country road.  However, near where I live now, there is a close trail that takes me there and through the countryside.  I biked through it today and like the trail quite a lot - quiet, safe, easy, etc.

Saw a dead frog on the hot gravel road.
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