Monday, June 14, 2010

Gopher Snakes in Rock Piles

A common but spectacular sight in Utah Valley:

We tried our luck with some rock piles:

The cactus flowers were worth a look:

In each of the many


This was a breeding pair of gopher snakes. They were copulating when found and then decided to take off in different directions when they saw us. Both of these gopher snakes were about 5 feet long.

Judging by their huge heads, these were really old gopher snakes. The male, being held on the right, had girth like a python.

Another pose with the well-fed couple:

We made sure they escaped in the same direction:

Both didn't quite fit in this hiding spot:

Some of the scenery. We also observed a juvenile hawk being chased away from a high cliff nest repeatedly. It was complaining loudly and kept trying to return to the nest, which probably had this year's chicks in it. We were fortunate to have found any snakes in this small canyon with a hawks' nest overlooking almost every part of the rock slides.

This is the first bat that I have ever flipped. It literally scared the pee out of it:

The bat made some of the most unusual noises that I have ever heard. I thought that bats hung out in groups and in caves.

I put the thing back by the bark to allow it to climb back in and it gave us a bat farewell.

We stumbled upon 2 fawns:

These fawns froze and wouldn't move a muscle:

The fawns wouldn't even flee when approached:

It was cool to be able to pet wild fawns, but

then we wondered if the mom would abandon them because of our scent.