Image by Vicki's Nature via Flickr
Friday, a lovely warm day, was fun for more than just me. I spent the morning enjoying a view of deer from the blind. I had 10 doe and two young bucks in front of me. I graced two hours of watching them, yes they stayed right there in front of me for two full hours. It was so warm I only needed a light jacket. The deer were moving early, and shared one of those special sunrises with me, making it that much more spectacular and breathtaking.
I started out a little late, around 6:00 AM, and was kind of worried that I may have spooked the animals while walking into the blind. Even the early morning was warm, requiring only my jacket and a light coat to stay warm. It was that time when the black of night starts turning to a smooth yet abstruse grey when the first deer came out. A lone doe, grazing as she walked along an unseen trail, obviously familiar to her. She moved with such grace and purpose, it seemed a prelude to a beautiful ballet. At first, I could only see her dark silhouette as she moved from the trees. Detail was provided just a short time later, painting her in colors of soft warm brown and white. As the morning changed and offered a view of it’s potential, she was joined first by one, then another, and another, until there were 10 doe and yearling grazing in front of me. The beauty of it was stunning to behold.
As the sun just started breaking the horizon, bathing us with its warm glow, two young boisterous bucks came out to play. Acting just like little boys in grade school, they stayed away from the girls, and play fought with each other. Prancing around, posturing, and sparing, practicing those skills that will be of use just a little later in their life. It was a treat for my eye’s and soul to witness. I felt like the benefactor of all the wonders of the world to share this time, especially with a beautiful sunrise to go along with it.
After this amazing morning, we went back to the camp and sat out front enjoying the sunshine and scenery. It was just JJ Jr. and I this weekend, and we spent some time discussing our plans for the deer lease, and how we could improve it for next season. Of course it would not be deer camp with out a few tall tales, and practical jokes to help pass the time. He has the enthusiastic and optimistic view of the world that only an 18 year old in his first year on his own can possess.
For the evening, I sat the same blind. We try to get into the blinds around 3:00 PM for the same reason as getting in them early in the morning. The longer you have to get settled in and relaxed before the animals come out, the less chance they will discover you watching. I had a bit of a long wait, but it was not all that bad. I kept myself occupied listening to the music of nature. There is so much to hear if one just takes the time to quietly sit and listen. Little did I know the wonders of the day were far from over.
The deer came out in a rush about 5:00 PM. They were all running and playing, chasing each other around. Two does were having a little argument, standing on their rear legs, slapping hooves with each other loudly. When a flock of about 15 turkeys came in and joined in the fun. Surprisingly, the yearlings actually played with the turkeys, running around in the group of them like a bunch of school children playing tag your it. The turkey seemed to join in the fun, and were not bothered in the least. The adult does were a little on nervous, and moved away from the turkeys, but did not intervene. It was one of those OMG moments that are so very common out in the wilds of the out doors.
Two turkeys were following each other around, with amorous intentions. The gobbler following close behind a bearded hen, chortling and trying hard to keep get her attention. They moved down close to the blind, and continued their game away from the group. As they crossed within a few feet of the blind, they caught scent of my presence, and let out a series of warnings that caused both the turkey and deer to quickly leave the field. It was 20 minutes worth of startling fun for me, and an experience I will remember for quite a while. The best part is I captured a few moments of it on video.
Please forgive the poor quality, I’m still trying to figure out how to focus this camera. You’ll be able to see the adult deer on the left side, and the yearlings running around in the group of turkey. I hope you enjoy it.