wildlife encounters

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desert spirit
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City, State: Tucson, AZ

wildlife encounters

Post by desert spirit » Nov 11 2008 3:08 pm

This afternoon I was wandering out in Tucson Mountain Park and stumbled upon a small bunch of javalina in a little wash. Made me think about the wildlife I've been lucky to see over the past few years ... bear, elk, bison, eagles, bighorn sheep, a bobcat, a gila monster, etc, etc, not to mention various unfriendly crawling critters. Never seen a mountain lion, but I heard one bringing down a deer one time, off in the woods. I was also stalked by a griz a couple years ago, up in the Tetons. I was never so petrified in my life.

So I'm curious ... what wildlife have you guys seen?

Hayley

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fairweather8588
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by fairweather8588 » Nov 11 2008 3:15 pm

I've heard more snakes then I've seen unfortunately, but one of the coolest things I've seen was a coral snake, something that is rare to come by. Deer at Reavis Ranch, lots of packs of javelina in McDowells, marmots in Colorado, a bear in Glacier NP, and all other sorts of small critters
No man should go through life without once experiencing healthy, even bored solitude in the wilderness, finding himself depending solely on himself and thereby learning his true and hidden strength

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te_wa
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by te_wa » Nov 11 2008 3:20 pm

was fortunate to spot about 8 Coatimundi in Fish Creek last weekend. One more thing to scratch off my list.. next? Cougar and Bear.
:D

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Jeffshadows
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by Jeffshadows » Nov 11 2008 3:21 pm

I saw a kit fox in situ this last weekend for the first time in the foothills near Chiminea canyon...that was pretty cool.
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fricknaley
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by fricknaley » Nov 11 2008 3:48 pm

In Arizona I've seen black bear, a mountain lion, fox, a coati, great horned owl, coral snake, gila monsters, a twin-spotted rattlesnake, couple of tortoises, and an elegant trogon as the most notable. Oddly I still have not seen a full-grown tarantula.
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Jeffshadows
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by Jeffshadows » Nov 11 2008 4:04 pm

I run into the most tarantulas when moving wood for a fire, etc...
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big_load
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by big_load » Nov 11 2008 4:25 pm

The only AZ critters I haven't seen are a gila monster and a cougar. I've been pretty close the latter, though. I ran into azhiker4444 about 100 yards after one crossed his path. He was still a bit incoherent. I've also found steaming scat a few times. The thing that gets me most is when a flock of quail explode out of the brush right in front of me. Even rattlesnake adrenaline wears off faster than that.

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fricknaley
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by fricknaley » Nov 11 2008 6:35 pm

big_load wrote:The thing that gets me most is when a flock of quail explode out of the brush right in front of me. Even rattlesnake adrenaline wears off faster than that.
How true is that? I've literally screamed at the top of my lungs more than once due to those little boogers. :o
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PaleoRob
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by PaleoRob » Nov 11 2008 8:22 pm

Never seen a bear in Az.
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big_load
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by big_load » Nov 11 2008 8:33 pm

PageRob wrote:Never seen a bear in Az.
You might have better luck further south. I've seen them a couple places in the Superstitions, in the Galiuros, and in the Rincons. I'm surprised I've never seen one in rim country, but it's probably just bad timing. There's no place to see bears like NJ, by the way. The current unofficial estimate for my county is five bears per square mile. (The official estimate is under wraps, but it was three per square mile about 4 years ago, and incidents have doubled in the last year alone).

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Hoffmaster
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by Hoffmaster » Nov 12 2008 8:50 am

I saw a bear along the Beeline up on the rim about 6 weeks ago. I couldn't have been more thrilled, since it was the last weekend I was to be in AZ before moving to Ohio, and I hadn't seen a bear before. I've seen bighorn sheep in Aravaipa, and near the Hoover Dam. I've seen coatis on Pinal Mtn in Globe. Snakes everywhere! Oh, the same weekend we saw the bear, we came across a bobcat standing in Ellsworth Rd near Usery Mtn Park. About 2 years ago, I had a mtn lion run across the trail in front of me while I was mtn biking at Red Mtn/Hawes in Mesa. I've seen Cous deer in the Supes, and elk everywhere north and east of Phoenix. I got within 20 ft of elk last spring outside the Bright Angel Lodge at the Grand Canyon. Made for great pics! I've seen plenty of antelope in House Rock Valley, in the plains near Eagar/Springerville, and along the 17 between the Prescott exits and Camp Verde.

Now I'm in Ohio, and the only thing to see here is deer and turkeys. There are more deer here than you can shake a stick at. It's ridiculous. Oh, it sucks here too. I miss you guys and I miss AZ!
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JoelHazelton
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by JoelHazelton » Nov 12 2008 9:04 am

I see deer all the time and they don't even phase me anymore. I've seen a handful of coyotes and a few skunks, mostly while driving back roads at night, a few rattlesnakes and a Gila Monster in the Supes, some tarantulas, a bald eagle while kayaking Apache Lake, some elk and turkeys out in the Blue Range, and a bobcat on the Bear Jaw Trail. No bear yet, which sucks. No mountain lion yet, either, which I'm not complaining about. Although I did have the experience on the Weatherford trail when I heard the mountain lion scream uncomfortably close to me, behind and above.

Seeing wildlife is one of the coolest things.
"Arizona is the land of contrast... You can go from Minnesota to California in a matter of minutes, then have Mexican food that night." -Jack Dykinga

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JimmyLyding
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by JimmyLyding » Nov 12 2008 12:39 pm

Deer are always cool. http://hikearizona.com/phoZOOM.php?ZIP=37764. I seem to notice lizards a lot. I guess that's a good thing because they frequently make good photo subjects. I am getting more into birds, but I'm not nearly knowledgeable enough to identify many species.
However, the beast I really want to see is a sasquatch! How cool would that be?

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azdesertfather
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by azdesertfather » Nov 12 2008 1:02 pm

big_load wrote:
PageRob wrote:Never seen a bear in Az.
You might have better luck further south. I've seen them a couple places in the Superstitions, in the Galiuros, and in the Rincons. I'm surprised I've never seen one in rim country, but it's probably just bad timing. There's no place to see bears like NJ, by the way. The current unofficial estimate for my county is five bears per square mile. (The official estimate is under wraps, but it was three per square mile about 4 years ago, and incidents have doubled in the last year alone).
bears in the supes?? :scared: ;)
i thought the elevation was too low for them. where did you see them?
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." — Henry David Thoreau

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JimmyLyding
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by JimmyLyding » Nov 12 2008 1:25 pm

There are definitely black bear in the Superstitions. I've seen scat full of manzanita berries that was definitely from a bear. No pictures, however. Grasshopper almost stepped in a huge pile on the Deer Creek "trail." The game unit that includes the Superstitions has bear hunting, but I don't know how many are taken there in a given year. A good rule of thumb with black bear is that they're going to be found anywhere they can find food. Manzanitas and acorns are great vittles for bears.

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chumley
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by chumley » Nov 12 2008 1:49 pm

Because I haven't seen anybody else mention this one, I saw a porcupine in a meadow near Dick Hart Ridge last summer. He was initially startled by me, but then just proceeded to "waddle" through the grass. My dog was very excited and seemed certain he could catch it, but I was able to convince him that he probably didn't want to investigate too closely. :o
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JimmyLyding
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by JimmyLyding » Nov 12 2008 1:52 pm

I'd love to see a wolf, or better yet a pack of wolves. A jaguar would be next on the list, but I would be absolutely shocked to see one.

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JoelHazelton
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by JoelHazelton » Nov 12 2008 2:02 pm

JamesLyding wrote:I'd love to see a wolf, or better yet a pack of wolves. A jaguar would be next on the list, but I would be absolutely shocked to see one.
I'd soil my pants if I saw a jaguar, out of excitement.
"Arizona is the land of contrast... You can go from Minnesota to California in a matter of minutes, then have Mexican food that night." -Jack Dykinga

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nonot
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by nonot » Nov 12 2008 7:29 pm

Judging by the quantities of bear scat, upper fish creek in the supes is a good place to find some bears.
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desert spirit
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Re: wildlife encounters

Post by desert spirit » Nov 13 2008 7:11 am

JamesLyding wrote:However, the beast I really want to see is a sasquatch! How cool would that be?
Oh heck, hasn't everybody seen those? :D

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