Just so those from *off won’t think life here is unrelentingly lovely, I felt compelled to show you the dark side of country life, with a snippet from a little essay under construction. Our dog, who scares away more potential animal observations than he produces, has a nose for small mammals, and brought us two mammal sightings this week. As far as his species memory and drive goes, insectivores (moles and shrews underground) and small rodents (voles and mice in above ground nests of …

Of Mountains and Molehills Read more »

Test results are pending to explain this puzzling and disturbing die-off of mallards along a small, remote Idaho creek. Bacterial or fungal agents are said to be suspected, but why only mallards susceptible? Migratory mallards from Canada and their local cousins staggered and struggled to breathe before collapsing, Parrish said. He said every mallard in a radius of several miles has died–approximately 2,500, up from an earlier estimate of 1,000. “I’ve never seen anything like this in 20 years here,” he said. “There were …

Dead as a Duck Read more »