**Update SOLD** This mama raccoon sent her baby up that tree as fast as she could when our paths crossed. She then climbed after him to make sure he was safe! So precious! I don't think I'll ever forget that encounter!!!! This is in my Shop now. Link in Bio! 💚
A surprising encounter this one. While mountaineering in the Ortler valley we stumbled onto a small herd of Yaks. This bull was defending its companions and we submissively sidestepped to let them pass. Until that moment I didn't know these animals even lived in the alps, but it was a fun surprise! #WildlifeWednesday#HideOutside *Wildlife Wednesday - Yak, Italy, 2017**
One of the world's most spectacular natural events - every year over a million wildebeest, zebra and antelope migrate clockwise around the Serengeti-Masai Mara ecosystem across two countries, Tanzania and Kenya.
I wanted to capture the chaos surrounding this mass of Wildebeest, so I chose to shoot with a slow shutter to create intentional motion blur to portray the movement.
Nikon D800e + Tamron 150-600mm
f32 1/8sec ISO50
The highly social Acorn Woodpecker. A king of industry. Threatened by forest fires.
Truly a bird that lives up to its name, the Acorn Woodpecker spends its life gathering acorns and drilling holes in trees to cache the stash. These woodpeckers live in small defined ranges on the west coast and create granaries or "acorn trees" by drilling holes in trees, dead branches, telephone poles, and wooden buildings. The woodpeckers then collect acorns and find a hole that is just the right size for the acorn. As acorns dry out, they are moved to smaller holes and granary maintenance requires a significant amount of the bird's time
The acorns are visible, and the group defends the tree against potential cache robbers like Steller's jays and western scrub jays. Acorns are such an important resource to the California populations that acorn woodpeckers may nest in the fall to take advantage of the fall acorn crop, a rare behavior in birds. They are so good at storing acorns that in 2012 Woodpeckers put 490 lb of acorns into one wooden water tank in Arizona.
Acorn woodpeckers practice cooperative breeding, which is a relatively rare evolutionary trait. Cooperative breeding is defined as more than two birds taking care of nestlings in the nest. With the acorn woodpecker, cooperative breeding occurs in two ways: coalitions and family groups. Coalitions of adult acorn woodpeckers nest together, localizing to storage granaries. Additionally, adult offspring often stay in their parents' nest and help raise the next generation of woodpeckers. It is generally believed that limited territories drive cooperative breeding behavior in birds, and in the case of the acorn woodpecker, this limited territory is the acorn storage granary.
Right now their small range is under threat from the many forest fires in California.