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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.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pulled in two directions

Day 3

By the time Coyote showed up at set 421, Gray Fox had paid 7 visits and left 27 images.

I have no way of knowing exactly how many foxes Gray Fox happens to be, but suspect there are two look-alikes, a couple, in this corner of Chimineas.

But back to Coyote.

His first visit was brief. He looked at the camera, it flashed, and he was gone.

Caution, suspicion, fear, neophobia -- call it what you like -- it ushered him away.

Day 7

On his second visit, 4 days later, his decided to leave before the suspicious thing flashed.

Day 21

But  2 weeks later he was back.

He studied the suspicious thing long enough for it to flash, but when that happened he didn't hang around.

Day 28

Coyote made another appearance seven days later.

This time the camera was a stronger lure than the bait.

He needed to know more about the suspicious thing.

When the flash went off he played it safe.

He decided to leave Dodge City to braver souls like Gray Fox, who by this time had left 54 photos of his visits and scent-marking shenanigans.

Day 34

On day 34 however Coyote once again found himself drawn to the increasingly tempting stench from under the rock.

He was savoring that smell when the suspicious thing flashed and ended his reverie, but once again he escaped unscathed.

Day 57: 8:49:56

Finally, on day 57 Coyote stood his ground for over a minute.

He discovered that the suspicious thing was only a bluffer.

Its flash was harmless.

He sniffed the fascinating but fading balm with impunity.

The camera captured 4 images as he alternately sniffed and regarded the suspicious but harmless thing.

Day 57, 8:50:16

Day 57, 8:51:09

Day 57: last photo -- 8:51:29

The camera trap took pictures for 108 days.

Coyote left 12 photos during 7 visits, and Gray fox left 62 photos during 22 visits.

Two MOs.

If the suspicious thing had been dangerous, there's a good chance Gray Fox would be gone, and Coyote would still be around.


JK said...

This would certainly be another interesting thing to mine from your data sets. What is the average number of images per visit for each species? Of course a lot of work, but I imagine it could lead to fun results.

Anonymous said...

GREAT sequence of shots!

Henry said...

Great post Codger! Very interesting.

Joe said...

I've had the same experience. The coyotes always seem to be eyeing the cameras and the foxes rarely even notice them.

randomtruth said...

A good looking yote, and great behavioral data. Knew that set would deliver.