Monday, August 10, 2015

It’s a jungle out there: Wildlife in my backyard

While my neighbors are cutting down trees to expand their lawns, I’ve kept my backyard in Vienna, Va., pretty wild.
I like the privacy afforded by the trees and brush, but most of all I appreciate the wildlife. My little forest in Northern Virginia is home to or has played host to menagerie of creatures.
Mammals on the property include the usual rabbits, chipmunks, squirrels, mice and moles, along with woodchuck, raccoon, deer and fox. I’ve heard coyotes (maybe they’re coywolves) at night howling in nearby Difficult Run park, but haven’t seen any in my yard.
My property is home to toads, snakes, blue-tailed skinks and the occasional box turtle. There’s also a great variety of birds from yellow finches and cardinals to red-headed woodpeckers and hawks.
I feel like friggin’ Henry David Thoreau sometimes.

Photos (from top): Eastern box turtle, fox caught on night stealth cam, common five-lined skink, Eastern American toad and Northern brownsnake. 

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