Image by ::: Billie / PartsnPieces ::: via Flickr
We try to get into our blinds no later than 5:30, usually around 5:00 AM. That way we can get our selves situated and comfortable for the lengthy wait to come. Surprisingly, Saturday morning I waited less than an hour to see some activity. The early morning was just starting to light the landscape. That time of morning when there seems to be dim grey lights trying to vanquish the night sky, yet the sun had not yet broken the horizon. I noticed a slight movement along the tree line, not much more than a grey flash of something. Slowly, I lift my binoculars, to scan the tree line, being careful not to make any movement that might give my solitary presence away. Sure enough, there are two deer making their way up the edge of the trees, cautiously watching for predators or other animals. I watch, fascinated by their confidant clean movements. No wasted effort, purposeful, yet cautious. I sat in wonderment at the way wildlife moves in their own terrain. It’s a unique beauty that’s hard to describe, sleek yet effortless.
The deer, both does, slowly walked pausing frequently to feed on the plentiful sprouts of grass, leafs, and corn. Ever watchful yet seemingly comfortable in their surroundings. They took 45 minutes to travel a short distance of a couple hundred yards. Enjoying myself so much, I forget the morning chill that had caused my breath to appear like a light fog as I exhale. Anyone who has spent time in the outdoors know that time between first light, and the sun actually becoming visible is the coldest. I noticed none of the cold, even though just minutes before I was shivering from the damp Texas morning air. The two deer spent hours in the field in front of me, slowly joined first by one, then five more doe from another direction.
I had 8 deer in front of me, all does, three obvious yearlings, two elderly ladies, and thee middle aged young ladies. All simply beautiful, displaying varying shades of grey and tan-brown. I wish I had a video camera, for times like this are so interesting and rewarding. I watched them all morning until they finally disappeared into the woods, one by one.
I was hunting for a buck, and had no desire to take a doe this early in the season. I decided to wait a little longer, it was only 9:30 AM, a buck might still walk out to explore the field and corn feeder. I was able to open a soda, and eat my candy bar. sitting there astounded at the wonderment of the morning beauty. This is exactly why I love hunting. It has nothing to do with killing an animal. More so the simplicity of submersing myself in, and enjoying, the beauty of nature. I considered myself lucky, to have seen so many deer already.
While enjoying the morning sun shining in on my face, I heard some noise coming from the tree line to the south of me. I grabbed my binoculars and started scanning, trying to locate the source of that rustling noise. I could hear twigs cracking and breaking, and the noise of leafs being stepped on or pushed out of the way. Moments later, a solid black wild boar stepped out of the trees, and walked unceremoniously toward the corn feeder. There is not much beauty in the movement of the hogs. they just bull through anything in their way, and travel to the intended destination. Pretty soon the hog was munching on some corn left behind by the deer.
Suddenly there was a fluttering of wings and feathers, and the chortling of turkeys. One by one about 20 turkey come out of the same tree line, moving cautiously. They were obviously intent on getting their own fair share of the corn. The turkey seemed content to move up beside the Boar and start munching. The boar on the other hand was going to have none of that, not wanting to share his morning meal. He started to chase a turkey off, and then turned on a second one. I was then amazed to see all twenty turkey launch a dedicated attack on the boar, covering him in a flurry of flapping wings. Using their sharp spurs, and beaks to persuade the boar to relinquish his selfish thoughts. I sat stunned and amazed, watching as the 200 pound boar gave up and left. The turkeys then continued their trek through the field forgetting the corn they had just fought for. I had never before seen turkeys take on a wild boar.
Was my weekend productive? I think so even though I did not get a buck.