Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Gigantor - Ginormous - Goliath Squirrel... NOT

I took a short trip to a neighboring farm and had myself a pretty good day, photographically speaking. On the way there a whitetail doe was peaking at me through the bush. I get to my location, drive up a field road and park the truck. I get my stuff together and start trekking up the hill to one of my favorite spots. I hear a train smashing through the woods. There he was. A huge eight point whitetail buck antlers still in velvet, beautiful animal. He disappeared and moments later his little brother followed, a six point. They were both gone in a short moment. OK… So I get to my area and wait and wait and wait. No coyotes. That’s why I’m there, coyotes. They are supposed to be here. Hmm, hmm, hmm… Wait, what’s that! Holy camolie, what is that? Squirrel? No. What is that thing ambling around in the trees? You got to be kidding me. Not one of them. Your gonna have to scroll down to find out.   

Peak-a-boo Whitetail
Looking down the field road leading to my truck
8 point Whitetail

6 point Whitetail
And here is the monster squirrel... A Groundhog or Woodchuck

Woodchuck and groundhog are common terms for the same animal, the rodent with the scientific name of Marmota monax. Most closely related to squirrels, woodchucks actually can climb trees and also swim. We call them Groundhogs in this part of the country
Scanning the area

Looking for more...
Eating the tree leafs
and eating
He has a real grip on the branch

OK, last bite


Steve Ferendo said...

I have seen them climb trees several times over the years. Good job getting the pics of the groundhog and the bucks. Better luck next time with the coyotes.

Chip "Rocket Man" Allen said...

I had no idea they could climb trees until my wife's cousin mentioned he had shot one out of a tree in his yard with a high powered air rifle. While he hated to shoot something he wasn't going to eat his mother was having a fit because it was in her Japanese Maple and those trees are EXPEN$IVE!

texwisgirl said...

oh these are fantastic! have never seen photos of them in the trees! some folks call them 'whistle pigs'. :)

your deer are GORGEOUS!!! that 8 pt better be careful come fall... God bless 'em!

Joe said...

Thanks for stopping by and commenting in my blog Larry. I've been exploring yours and all I can say is WOW. Awesome pictures.

Larry Ostby said...

Steve, Chip, Theresa and Joe

Thank you all for your comments.

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

Great pictures Larry!! We have 3 of Punxsutawney Phil's cousins living here, and we call them groundhogs too--I'd forgotten that they could climb trees and if our dog gets too close to one in particular when she has her babies out, it chases her!

Julie G. said...

A most glorious series of photos, Larry! Beautiful deer action images. Look at those antlers! How lucky your were to capture such wonderful shots of the woodchuck. I've seen them waddling on the side of the road but never up a tree before. I did not know that they are capable of swimming. You learn something new every day. Thanks for sharing and educating me. Terrific series!

grammie g said...

Hi Larry...I have never heard of Woodchucks or Groundhogs climbing a tree before ...that is amazing great photo of the whole action!!
We here in Maine we call them Woodchucks.. well at least I do!!
Those Whitetail bucks are just beauties...while watching TV a couple of nights ago I heard a blowing or snorting noise ..don't know how to describe it ..and there in the moonlight was a buck in my back yard!!
Like your blog...great stuff!!

Larry Ostby said...

Kim, Thank you and yes mama groundhogs can get aggressive.

Julie, Thank you for the comments. Maybe next time I can catch one swimming.

Grammie, Thank you, I had only heard about them climbing trees or fence posts, never had seen it. I got lucky this day.

Bob Bushell said...

No Coyote over there, but, how about the Groundhog, brilliant.