If you’ve enjoyed recent El Niño wildlife sightings on the Essex blog (“Welcoming the CoyWolf: Whoever It May Be“, “Wrong to Kill Coyotes, Wolves and CoyWolves” and “Snow Geese By Whallons Bay“), we have three new images to share courtesy of Andrea McDonald (@andreamcd3) and John Davis (@wildwaystrekker). It turns out that 2016 might be an off-year for snow sports, but it’s a bonanza for El Niño wildlife sightings in and around Essex!
El Niño Wildlife Sightings
Normally at this time of year the Adirondack Coast is transformed with deep snow and a frozen lake, two seasonal changes that tend to increase wildlife sightings (and wildlife track sightings!) But El Niño’s meteorological deviations have dramatically altered the weather we’re experiencing along the Adirondack shores of Lake Champlain. Although frosty temperatures and an slightly-deeper-than-dusting of snow are currently offering mid-winter reminders when we step outside, Lake Champlain remains open. Skiers, snowshoers, sledders, and snowballs lament the scarcity of snow.
The spectacular bald eagle in the photograph below was documented by Andrea McDonald, a College Ambassador for College For Every Student. She shared her El Niño wildlife sighting on Twitter and explained in a subsequent tweet that she saw the bald eagle between Westport and Essex.
— Andrea McDonald (@andreamcd3) February 9, 2016
Bobcat and Coyote
Wildways and wildlife advocate John Davis is a frequent contributor to the Essex blog, ever-celebrating the ecological diversity that distinguishes our community. Yesterday he shared two new El Niño wildlife sightings, a bobcat and a coyote.
Friends of Split Rock Wildway, the Bobcat below is, I suspect, a full-grown female who hunts from across local lands protected by CATS, the Eddy Foundation, and Northeast Wilderness Trust. ~ John Davis
Previous El Niño wildlife photographs captured by John Davis via game camera this winter have been night shots, so this daylight image is especially exciting. Perhaps the improved quality of this photo will help others identify local bobcats? I certainly hope so! (We encourage anyone who successfully documents local wildlife to contact us about sharing the images on the Essex blog.) In addition to the daylight photograph of the bobcat, John Davis also passed along another recent photographs of a coyote.
The big dark Coyote, just visible on the Beaver lodge, has been hunting on Northeast Wilderness Trust lands northwest of Boquet Mountain. ~ John Davis
Thanks, Andrea and John. Great to know these wild wonders are living and thriving in our midst. We look forward to showcasing future photos from both of you and from everyone lucky enough to spy wild critters along the Adirondack Coast. We’re especially hoping to document local otter and mink sightings. Anybody?