Muskrat and Merlin

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RikWriter
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:36 pm

Muskrat and Merlin

Post by RikWriter » Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:00 am

Every visit these last few years, I have made a tradition of parking my rental in one of the pullouts in Little America and taking a hike off-road. I don't usually see anything, but I enjoy the solitude. This time I walked out to a couple of ponds on the west side of the road and I happened to find a muskrat doing his muskrat thing.

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I also saw what I believe is a merlin, which I have never seen before in the park.

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Mike
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:20 pm
Location: California

Re: Muskrat and Merlin

Post by Mike » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:37 am

Wonderful shots,I have never even heard of a Merlin but did see the same bird species along the Old Yellowstone Trail last month and I believe that those are the birds I saw flying around and maybe nesting in the cliff behind Canyon Campground in Yankee Jim Canyon.



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Max
Posts: 162
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:27 pm

Re: Muskrat and Merlin

Post by Max » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:16 pm

The Merlin is an interesting sighting. I don't think I've ever seen one here either, but someone did just see one a few days ago at Bridge Bay while waiting on the owl. Nice finds.

Max



yellvet
Posts: 194
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:54 pm

Re: Muskrat and Merlin

Post by yellvet » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:54 am

Great find on the Merlin, Rik. Yellowstone is right on the edge of its breeding grounds. Could be why most people don't see them very often in the Park. Great shot of a very uncommon bird in the GYE....congratulations!

Nice shot of the muskrat, too. I used to see a muskrat not far from the Indian Creek CG. Take the path behind the log cabin (at the CG entrance)that runs north, parallel to the stream. About a quarter mile or so, you'll see a brilliant colored thermal spring that feeds into the creek. Several times in the past, I've seen a muskrat swimming back and forth from the spring area to its home along the Creek. And its mouth and front feet were always jam-packed with twigs, branches and vegetation that it had collected. I couldn't tell if it had offspring to feed or if it was just building up its home. The muskrat was an unbelievable worker. I often thought that the Park should have put it on salary at $50/hr for all its hard work. I was so impressed by its work ethic that I walked over to the bank, bent down and asked it if would like to knock down all the tall grass at our house, saying that it could keep every blade. Apparently the muskrat wasn't interested because it zoomed out into the middle of the Creek. :lol:



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