MOM’s Best Friends

Volunteers are what make Michigan’s Natural world healthy and alive. We have the very best of people here in Michigan, who selflessly give of their time and money to help our beautiful state remain that way.

After some 15 years with Hiking Michigan and Hiking North/Central Michigan, I have met many people who have a special relationship with Mother Nature. It is not just their passion or Love for the Natural World, but it is also what MOM gives back to them in special ways.

A good example of this is Mark Wilson, director here at Hiking North/Central Michigan. Mark is up in Seney Wildlife Refuge for the summer working. You can take a look regularly on his Photo album of Seney experiences. MARK’S SENEY PHOTO ALBUM

mark-and-cameraMOM gives special things to Mark regularly. Yes……we all have those moments where we catch that critter doing something interesting, or that Bird swooping down for some food, or run across that patch of rare Flowers you seldom get a chance to see. When you take a look at Mark’s Photo albums of his outdoor experiences, you will see just what I mean. On a regular basis he captures unique and extra special outdoor activities that we all hope to run across ourselves.

Mark is of course, an experienced Outdoorsman and understands different techniques in Tracking and waiting on critters in the wild. He also has a special inquisitive nature that leads him to places where those special flowers grow. But it is much more then that. It happens to regularly for it to be just Mark’s experience. MOM is giving him special things too. I believe it is because of what he gives the Natural world in his work and help.

OK……this may sound a bit wild. But take a look at some of his Outdoor Photo albums and see if anyone you know has that kind of regular luck in finding critters, Birds and special environments as mark does.

MichiganWildlifeThere are others who get this kind of treatment from MOM too. Joshua Chrisman from MICHIGAN’S WILDLIFE just has a way of capturing so many different critters, plants, insects, on such a regular basis, that it goes beyond his experience or his personal luck. MOM likes him a bit extra. 🙂

There are many other people I know or have met through my years out in the Outdoors. These are just a couple of MOM’s favorites, I thought I would mention here. I could not possibly list everyones name here. But you know who you are. And so does MOM.

Wildlife by Flashlight

OwlatNightMany animals only come out at night. Or this is the time period when they are most active. It is not always advisable to go wandering out into the Forest, in the middle of the night, even with a flashlight. Getting lost, falling and hurting yourself or many other unforeseen things can occur, that would turn a fun time, into a disastrous time.

So start this night-time animal hunt process in the safety of your own backyard. You maybe very surprised on just what you may find in your own backyard after dark.

296227_528127123919491_1029290618_nGet yourself two flashlights. One should be a wide-beam, not so bright type of flashlight. You will use this flashlight to basically find movement and activity in and around the yard. This dull beam will not necessarily, instantly scare off any critters you may come across.

Once you have spotted some movement, then turn on your second flashlight, which will be a very bright, high-beam style of flashlight. In some cases this bright beam will make the critter freeze in their tracks. If it does not, it will certainly shed much light on your subject and help you to identify what you have found moving in the darkness.

DO NOT immediately reach out and try and touch or grab what you have found. Make a very goodSkunkNight ID before you proceed any further. There maybe no need to touch your discovery at all. Hopefully the High-beam flashlight will cause your new found critter to stop, allow you to ID it, and possibly get a picture of it for future reference.

You will truly be amazed at what lurks in the night, in your own backyard! Our friend Joshua, at “Michigan’s Wildlife” suggested this kind of night exploring on his site. Go and visit him and discover other night-time tricks for finding animals, or see the many IDs of Animals, plants and Insects he has on his site. It is a treasure trove of information and knowledge, all based in our beautiful Michigan.

Some cations to take while night-time Animal searching are……Be alert. You can sometimes get pretty close to a critter in the dark. This is what your after, unless that critter is a Skunk, or lets say a Possum you have accidentally cornered. Being alert to your actions and all that is around you while you explore, should in most cases, eliminate the common possible dangers to night-time Animal searching.

It’s Always Good There

I wasn’t feeling real good today. Health has been slow and not so good lately. I have become very let down by all the negativity of one of the most important elections of my own lifetime. My Moms own health has been poor, on and off, Had a very painful Doctor visit that seem to last for hours as well.

So I did the one thing I knew would not let me down. I headed for the Forest. Maybe it is the odd consistency there. Nature is not really consistent, but it does have laws, rules and realities that are pretty solid, and what makes it all work. Mom has some strict Rules there. (that’s Mom Nature)

I took a stroll at a very private place, I will not reveal at this time, and plopped my self down on a small hillside, that overlooked a small stream that fed a small Pond. I might as well sat down at the Circus. Endless activities, including clowns. 🙂

Critters of all kinds getting in the last of their heavy work before the first snows. The last of the Pond life burrowing in or re-securring their Dens. Plenty of Critters coming in for drinks of water or a possible meal at this very busy place.

I kinda slid down, half laying down on my back, and mostly disappeared in some low shrubbery. The Knights of Knee would have been proud. It did not take long before I WAS the hillside, and just blended into it all. I placed myself down-wind of the Pond and stream and virtually disappeared into the whole scene.

It did not take long before all was forgotten. My mind had cleared, much of the pain had gone…..or at least no longer had my undivided attention, and my focus was being part of my surroundings. Once again, Mom had come through with something simple as just being Mom.

It is not very often that I head out to the Forest and not get what I am looking for. Even when I do not know what I am looking for. It is all good there. 🙂