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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of 4 small primates. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

The Big Sneeze?





Three days ago shortly after 5:00PM mother bear and cub visited this camera-trap set. They hung around for a half-hour taking pictures of themselves. What was the attraction? The Furfindr (a digital player) and a road-killed squirrel were hanging in the tree. The squirrel should have been the attraction, and the Furfindr should have gone unnoticed, because it was programmed only for playback after dark.

Well, Mama didn’t touch the road kill, but she obviously sampled the Furfindr. The camouflage tape was torn, and the end plug had been popped out. Fortunately, it didn’t taste good enough to eat. It still works.



Baby bear was also intrigued with the camera. There were bear ears in two of the 13 photos. The cub seems a bit large to be this year's youngster. If it was born last year, it was a runt that made it through the winter, probably by denning with its mother.



And what caused the big sneeze? Could it have been the camouflage tape? Maybe I should chew on the tape myself, and see if it has the same effect. Or is it a sneeze at all? The more I look at it, the more I think it is a plastic bag.

3 comments:

Don Wilson said...

In support of the plastic bag theory, I know it is impossible for humans to sneeze with their eyes open (I know, you will have to try it next time you sneeze). Perhaps bears are made of sterner stuff, but I would guess that they sneeze pretty much the same way - dogs and cats seem to, anyway.

Camera Trap Codger said...

Batfinger me mann--you make an excellent observation that I as an ethologist should have caught. I am still freaked out about the plastic--I know I packed the clear plastic bag with me to the next camera trap set--because there was another piece of bait in it. Is someone spying on me? or baiting me with plastic bags? Gees. . . .

micah said...

Ummm...I actually get fooled a lot. But...