Sunday 25 September 2016

Into the wild

Red Deer Cervus elaphus (dominant stag & doe), 
Snežnik, September 2016 (first pic by Sara Cernich).
Red Deer Cervus elaphus (group of does & fawn), 
Snežnik, September 2016.
Red Deer Cervus elaphus (stag chasing females in the mist), 
Snežnik, September 2016.
Ural Owl Strix uralensis
Snežnik, September 2016.

Red Deer rutting season in Slovenia has reached the climax in the past week. During some recent visits to the Snežnik forests I could fully enjoy this spectacle from a close distance. A Red Deer Cervus elaphus stag (male) in particular was very photogenic (above) when it was trying to impress the does (females) on a forest glade in the evening. Quite a lot of rutting and chasing around was going on till darkness, when 2-3 BROWN BEARS Ursus arctos joined the show and visited the glade for feeding. The light was too poor for taking any photos, but views were quite mystic in the fading light and the soft foggy layer on the glade made the scenes even more spectacular. Earlier in the afternoon 2 Ural Owls Strix uralensis were spotted in the forest, while hunting in an open beech stand. Mammal supporting cast included: Wild Boar Sus scrofa, Fox Vulpes vulpes, Edible Dormouse Glis glis, Roe Deer Capreolus capreolus, Beech Marten Martes foina & Brown Hare Lepus europaeus, while interesting birds were Black Woodpecker Dryocopus martius and Tawny Owl Strix aluco. Increasing numbers of Jays Garrulus glandarius gathering acorns, indicate that autumn is in full swing. Have a good one!