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May 08, 2009


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Three cheers for using taxonomically correct names for the big hoofed mammals you saw at Yellowstone!

Hip, hip... hooray!
(repeat twice)

Go Dachshunds! Love, Pam, Jack, Matt, Ben, Nate, and Josh

Ozzy Osbourne and Kobe Bryant Williams - our dachshunds - may they live continue to live long! :)

My beagle Fred and I did an 18 day driving trip in 2007. I drove from New Jersey to Chicago for Thanksgiving with my sister and then to Minneapolis to visit a friend. The end of the trip included a visit to a friend in Kansas. But the middle of the trip was just me and Fred and the beauty of the west. We spent this big chunk of time in what is still generally pristine landscape. So you can imagine how amusing it was when we headed out of Colorado Springs, CO and hit the open road and then our first overpass in many, many days - and Fred ducked. I took a double-take, wondering what the heck he was doing. At the next overpass, he ducked again. Then I got my camera out and videotaped it - twice. Poor baby. He eventually adjusted to the overpasses once more, but we were well into Kansas before he stopped the ducking.

This wasn't shelter dog behavior necessarily, but it was unusual and completely unexpected. Dogs are funny. Bailey, my (possible) Coonhound mix, was obviously hit a lot with magazines. He doesn't like them, he won't come near you if you're reading one, and if you roll it up, he runs the other way.

Magnificent photos. Bison are amazingly serene looking animals, for being such big lugs.

We've have similar experiences with fear in both Abbey and another beagle we had a few years back by the name of Max.

For a good explanation of how animals think, I highly recommend reading the books of Dr. Temple Grandin. I met her two or three years ago, and she's facinating. Mildly autistic, she feels that the autism gives a better understanding of how animals think and feel. She gave me some good advice about Abbey: Think about her fears as a file that will never go away. And what I have to do is put that file in the file cabinet and don't take it out again--in other words, think of ways not to remind the dog of the fear. Facinating woman. I met her and the author of Marley and Me all in one summer's worth of book signings.

For more on Grandin: http://www.templegrandin.com/templehome.html

Hank and Abbey seem to be twins and we understand.

RE: oldest dog--I have a friend who had a beagle that lived to be at *least* 21--and I'm thinking she was closer to 25. I'll have to check. And a neighbor had a dachsie who was born the year before me and I'll be darned but what that dog was still alive during at least half of the time I was in college.

"Idaho does indeed use the same calendar as the rest of the United States."

Yes, but it's a 1959 calendar.

A while back on a wintery night, a "friend's" car had been serviced at the dealership and they had locked the key in the car for him so he could pick it up after hours. When he got there, he realized he did not have a key to get into the car. He tried with another fellow for about an hour to use one of those tools to unlock the car. Finally, I had to leave my nice warm house and a lovely pinot noir to drive to the Subaru dealer, which is about 10 miles away, with the other key. I pull up next to the car and hit the remote to hear "beep" as the car unlocks. My "friend" says to me, I have that remote thing I just don't have the key. Well, I say, if you have the remote, why didn't you use it to get into the car to get the key? So that's kind of a reverse remote v. key story. It's also a "how dumb can you be" story. Names have been changed to protect the not-so-innocent.

Bison certainly aren't lugs! They can run faster and jump higher than many other animals, especially humans. They can run up to 40 miles an hour and leap 6-foot fences.

On behalf of TWT employees, thanks for the $5.

Mystery animal = elk. Males are referred to as "bulls" and females are called "cows." Without scale it's difficult to say, but I assume this is a young cow.

I love the photos. Joan you might have to switch gears and become a fine art landscape and wildlife photographer!!!

A Double Quarter Pounder? You know they have Single Quarter Pounders, right? ;>

Great pictures! I assume the bison close up was done with a telephoto lens?
At least I hope you didn't try what we saw a some clueless tourists doing in Yellowstone when we were there in June 1990. One was stalking a bison in a field, and two others were very stupidly closing in on a moose from two sides as it stood just outside some trees in a clearing. This, despite signs in the park, warnings from the park rangers when ever they talked with campers, and information in all the park materials they hand out that the bison, moose, bears, etc., are WILD animals and may attack if they feel cornered. Made you wonder just who the 'dumb animals' were.
Of course, the park ranger who gave the nature talk one evening at our campsite told us all this, and then remarked that the most common injury they have to deal with is chipmunk bites. People try to feed the little guys and get bitten for their trouble.

I am in awe of the pictures you took for this posting. The best of the trip me thinks.


Marty Kady Sr.

Hey Janet - We saw a high percentage of those idiots who think it's ok to get right in the faces of wild animals. I, however, was safely next to (or inside of) the car.. usually with many yards and the open car door between me and the subjects. I picked up a 1.4x lens extender mid trip which significantly increases my ability to "get close" and with 20+ pixels, I have plenty of room to crop. My bigger issue is holding the heavy lens steady without a tripod. My lens does have image stabilization -- but it can only do so much to help the arm jostling of the beagles.

Hey - how did "Simply the Best" get filed under B on your iPod? A better question might be: how did Tina Turner get onto your iPod at all? Ugh. On the flip side, "A Better Place to Be," "Between the Wheels," and "Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me" all get a big thumbs up.

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