Welcome to my Astrophotography Blog!

This is a journal of my adventures in astrophotography -- taking images of distant celestial objects. Please look around and feel free to add your comments, questions, and critique to any of the entries by clicking the "comments" button on the bottom of each entry -- or just say "howdy!

And don't forget to click on the images for a larger view!

So choose either the Red pill or the Blue pill and follow me down the wormhole....


Comanche Springs Star Party

Comanche Springs Star Party
Doin' my thang at the Comanche Springs Astronomy Campus (where I often become a "red ghost")

Dallas Sky

Rancho Venado Sky

Atoka Sky

Camanche Springs Sky

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Strangers in the Night...

Interesting things happen when you sit in a field late at night in the middle of nowhere...

While sitting under the stars during an astrophoto session, one hears all kinds of "sounds of the night". On May 31 about midnight I heard some strange "crying". I thought it was a wounded rabbit. About a half hour later a deer started snorting at me from some nearby cedar trees. It was totally dark (no moon) and I could not see anything.

Deer use this loud snort as an alarm as they dash away from danger, but this deer was not leaving. She kept snorting and circling me (unseen) for a good thirty minutes. I was amused but thought nothing of it.

The next morning, Kim got up to let the dogs out and came running back inside all alarmed! I thought there was a rattlesnake in the yard. Instead, we found a tiny newborn deer in the fire pit! The little critter was just a day or so old and didn't even have its eyes open yet. Evidently it got lost and fell into the fire pit and couldn't get out.

So, THAT was the crying I heard the night before. And now the "snorting deer" made sense -- mama was looking for her baby and I was in her path. The fawn was really exhausted and I thought near death. It has hot outside, already close to 90 F. I cooled her down with some water (she was to young to know how to drink) and set her in the shade. Then she surprised me by standing up and wobbling down the hill, crying for mama again. She had some life left in her yet!

So I decided to take her to the cedars at the bottom of the hill to the north of the house where I knew mama and other deer generally hang-out. I sat her under a tree and Kim and I went to town for lunch and to buy a baby bottle to try to get some fluids in her. But when we came back a couple hours later, she was gone.

We looked all around, but she was nowhere to be found. Then Kim saw a group of deer running in the cedars about 50 yards away. It appeared little "Star" (okay, I named her... I'm a softy) got reunited with her clan... a happy ending : )


Marianne said...

Ooh, what a cutie. So glad you could get her back to her mama and friends... You softy, you. :-D


I am JOhn said...

I wish I would have taken a pic of Kim or I holding her so you could see scale -- she is TINY!

She was about the size of Ponce, but weighed even less... probably less than 10 pounds.

Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

What a little baby she is! Wow! My concern, first, would have been would mama deer have taken her back with human "scent" all over her?? An amazing encounter with nature.

I am JOhn said...

Hey, I don't smell THAT bad! I was more worried about Kim taking me back with fawn scent all over me.