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Come Any Closer


Come Any Closer
Photo Information
Copyright: Rick Price (Adanac) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-04-12
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon 40D, Canon 100-400/4.5-5.6L IS
Exposure: f/8, 1/500 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Date Submitted: 2008-04-15 12:09
Viewed: 3657
Points: 34
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Well we are back home as Lucy is having much trouble once more with her back, so I drug her home, kicking and screaming as she didn't want to stop camping and taking photos.

This image is of the biggest American Badger I have ever seen. Unfortunately there is nothing in this image that would give you something to compare with. This is possibly a pregnant female but either way it was a beauty but it didn't stick around for long.

American Badger
Taxidea taxus
General Description

By Gustave J. Yaki


The American Badger, one of the larger members of the Weasel Family, has become increasingly rare throughout most of its range. This includes most of the central and southwestern half of North America, north from central Mexico to southeastern British Columbia; Alberta and Saskatchewan north to about the 54th parallel; southwestern Manitoba; and presumably still in extreme southwestern Ontario. It has a larger counterpart in the Old World.

Man is about the only enemy of this species. Besides hunting and trapping (the fur has little value), they also frequently are run over by vehicles. Perhaps the biggest reason for their decline is their fragmented landscape. Their main diet consists of ground squirrels. Colonies of those species are increasingly becoming further apart, therefore ready access to their food supply is decreasing.

Badgers appear to have a broad, flattened body. The effect is exaggerated by their short legs and the fringe of long guard hairs along the flanks. Their small head is broad between the ears and tapered to the pointed snout. The front feet are equipped with long, ivory-coloured toes, ideal for excavation. It is said that they are able to dig downward faster than two men armed with shovels can, in an attempt to get at them.

The face of this species is singularly attractive. A narrow white stripe runs from the tip of its nose to the back of the head. The rest of the snout and the top of the head is dark. White areas surround the eyes and ears (which are trimmed with black), with narrow black crescents between them. The back, sides and most of the relatively short tail are a grizzled grey, often with a ripple-like pattern. The feet and the tip of tail are dark.

Average measurements for British Columbia males which tend to be the largest Canadian subspecies are: length, 800 mm (28 in); tail, 142 mm (5.5 in); weight, 6 kg (13.2 lb). Females are smaller.

Badgers are solitary except during the mating season, August and September. They inhabit the open prairies, aspen parkland and farmlands, avoiding continuous woodlands, often trotting across long distances. Individuals in the northern part of their range are said to "hibernate", at least for the worst of the winter. More likely, it is just an extended sleep. Where they live near humans, they are primarily nocturnal, but if hungry may be seen abroad during the day. As previously alluded, they feed on rodents, mainly ground squirrels, obtained by digging them out of their den. Coyotes often follow them, perhaps in hope of catching the rodent as it comes out the back entrance. Other food items are pocket gophers, prairie-dogs, kangaroo rats, pocket mice and meadow voles. They also eat ground-nesting birds, snails, insects and sometimes carrion. Apparently they have a fondness for honey. There is also a report of one killing a rattlesnake.

After the late summer mating, the developing embryo goes into a restive stage, not implanting until mid-February. The two to five, blind young are born from late May to mid-April at the end of a 10 m (33 ft) long den, 3 m (10 ft) below ground. Their eyes open at 30 days. They are weaned when half-grown, eating food brought to the den by the mother, until she takes them out at night to hunt. The young frolic near the den mouth in early summer. They disperse when three-quarters grown. Some of the young females reach sexual maturity the first autumn, but most not until the next year.

eqshannon, pekkavalo1, jaycee, NinaM, Luis52, maurydv, CeltickRanger, Jamesp, Dan, JPlumb, gerbilratz, SkyF has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

First time I have ever seen one that I can remember...well saw one once in the Museum of Natural History in Cleveland but it was "stuffed" and maybe...as in single digits as a kid at the zoo...but this is a cool shot and neat looking animal. welcome home...any more surprises:-) ?
Bob

  • Great 
  • mariki Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 838 W: 60 N: 2307] (9477)
  • [2008-04-15 12:25]

Hello Rick,

Very nice picture of this animal. I do not think to have ever seen it, even on TV. Excellent composition. Good POV, DOF and focus. Beautiful natural colours.
Cheers,
Mariki

Hi Rick,

Amazing creature, have never seen or even heard about it. Very nice picture with good composition, POV and sharpness.

TFS

Pekka

nice pic, great light, TFS Ori

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-04-15 12:41]

Hi Rick,

I don't think I have seen a Badger before. I love the way she is looking at you. So sorry about Lucy - hope she doesn't suffer too long with her back.

Jane

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-04-15 13:02]

Hello Rick,
The first time I see this animal. Beautiful photo. Hope you come with more photos of this animal.
Regards,
Peter

  • Great 
  • NinaM Gold Star Critiquer [C: 773 W: 3 N: 1157] (4077)
  • [2008-04-15 14:02]

Hi Rick, nice to see one of your picture again and I didn't even know there were badgers in Canada!You always come up with fantastic shots of wildlife, thank you! And poor Lucy with her back, I understand she didn't want to come back. We have to be careful with our body with time and it's not always simple to acknowledge! Thanks again, Rick my friend,

Francine

  • Great 
  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2008-04-15 14:03]

Hola Rick.
We have Badgers here, but they are in black and white colors. This one is difrent. and this is also the first time I have seen the big one. They like to eat all kind of wild rats and birds.
Saludos Rick. Hope Lucy is well by now.
Luis52.

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-04-15 14:03]

Hi Rick. I have never seen one before so thanks for posting. It looks like a big dog. We have Badgers but nothing like this. you have captured fine detail. well done TFS.
Nick..

Bellissima cattura, ottimo POV, molto buona la composizione con il contatto diretto dello sguardo, molto belli e naturali i colori. Grazie e complimenti. Ciao Maurizio

hello Rick

excellent shot of this strange animal, fine POV and DOF,
great eye-contact of the animal, excellent details, TFS

Asbed

  • Great 
  • Jamesp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
  • [2008-04-15 22:46]

Hi Rick

Sorry to hear about Lucy's back.

Great shot of this badger. I have never seen a wild one. Nice lighting.

James

  • Great 
  • Dan Gold Star Critiquer [C: 113 W: 0 N: 2] (18)
  • [2008-04-16 0:25]

Hi Rick,

I saw this animal only in documentary movies.
The value of this photo is done by the high quality and that is made in the wild.

TFS, Dan.

Wow Rick, I've never seen a badger. I'm not sure if I've even seen a picture of one. I'm betting you wouldn't want to corner one of these animals. The composition on this shot is excellent and you certainly have it's attention. I like how it blends in with that dry grass. At the same time I thought the shot might use just a tad more contrast so I've gone off to play in the sandbox. Say hi, and look after Lucy for us.

Thanks, John

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2008-04-16 7:05]

Well Rick,
this one is a real beauty. You sure come across some great critters on your travels. Very nice colours and good DOF - an excellent documentation my freind, thanks for sharing it.
Paul

Hi Rick, really nice to see this image, I did get to see a wild one once when I visited the US/Canada a while back, fabulous animal and a great achievement to get this, The notes are also first class. TFS regards h

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2008-04-16 11:32]

Hi Rick,
I heard they are very viscous so you right not to get any closer. This image shows that character trade very well.
Very nice work,
colors, details and sharpness are very nice.
TFS...Sky

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