Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Harsher Times

Winter is a harsh time of year for both man and beast.  It pretends that its soft white snows blanket with peace, but if you look closely their is red blood on that white cover.  While we do not yet have snow, there is a red tailed hawk that has kept our mouse and mole population down around the compost pile.  We also have a large mulch pile of wood chips from the tree fall that will probably house a bunch of rodents this winter!   The hawks are busy.  The one below managed to swallow the little rodent he had in two gulps before flying away.


We have an abundance of deer this year (every year) and we have a hunter neighbor who is an archer.  He eats whatever he shoots.  If you are vegan, the image of deer wasting disease may be more to your tastes.  I feel at peace with hunters and fishermen that control the excess.  He now sits high in a tree at the front of our land waiting for a good target. 


We have four young deer...maybe a year or even two in age, that come through the bracken and munch not so quietly each day.  This is hunting season and they are wary, and as I stand on my deck and try to see them in the deep brush, I can see and ear or eye angled my way if I clear my throat.  We also have a large doe who rests against the bank of our ravine on the opposite side of the house.  She rests in the company of a large 6 point buck who is most impressive in stance.  I have tried to get photos of him, but without success.




You may wonder if I eat venison.  I do.  I think it might be healthier than the hormone treated and corn fed beef available in my store.  I know the deer have happier lives than many feed-lot steers.  

13 comments:

Brian Miller said...

nice..pretty sure i told you before but we have a family of deer that live in our yard...they are up to 7 right now...they out number us...

and free rodent control? not bad...

Frank Baron said...

Your thoughts on hunting and fishing echo mine. I hope you manage to get a picture of that buck one day. But your shot of the doe is fine.

Thistle Cove Farm said...

We are in total agreement!
Merry Christmas to you and yours.

SueAnn said...

I too have hawks patrolling my property and that of my neighbors. And I appreciate all their hard work. This time of year is not easy on them.
Deer I have not eaten...but elk I have and it was delish!
Hugs
SueAnn

Peruby said...

Not much of a venison eater. Where do you get yours? From your neighbor?

I agree about the beef in the markets today. I watched a documentary on Genetically engineered (sometimes called Genetically modified) food. Gah!

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

Yes, many critters surrounding my cottage at the edge of the woods.
Now when Miss Callie is outside they do not venture close. But when she comes inside about 4:00 the show is on...

Dave said...

I enjoyed this blog Tabor. I think that you are lucky to have such wild creatures roaming freely around your home. We have only birds, but we love having them just as much. Nice photos too - Dave

sharplittlepencil said...

I hate guns myself, but I am a strong supporter of responsible hunters, those who use all their catch, who donate excess meat to food pantries, etc. I would be a sorry excuse for an omnivore if I didn't check the sources of meat, how the animals are treated, etc. Great thoughts - found your comments on Brian's blog! Your new friend, Amy
http://sharplittlepencil.wordpress.com/2011/12/12/impromptu-for-marques/

Mage said...

We are so isolated from things like this. I know we have skunks...I can smell them when they lose their tempers. We have mice, we have rats, we have a hawk, and when it is warmer, we have a murder of crows. I lived in the country when I was a kid and there we had everything from frogs to coyotes. I miss the critters.

kerrdelune said...

We still have hawks, Tabor, and the "red tails" hang around all winter snatching whatever they can grab, mostly rodents.

Deer populations are down this winter due coyote activity. Better for a deer to be felled by a well placed bullet or an arrow any day rather than it starving in the woods in winter. We found a whole yard full of dead deer one winter, and that was appalling.

Hve you tried eating bison?

Dave King said...

The picture of the doe is fantastic. Thank you so much for it!

Shrinky said...

Hunting to eat is a far cry from killing for killing's sake, I am also at peace with that.

I leave here once again marvelling at the beauty of your surroundings, you are truly blessed to live in such a place.

Pauline said...

Nature eventually balances things out, even as we help it along by taking food when we need it. I do not hunt nor fish but I help my brother eat what he hunts. We were raised on game, as my dad was without work for pay for two years and had we not eaten what he shot, we would have been hungrier than we were.