Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Animals We Have Seen En Route

We are now in snowy Jasper. Yes, that's right - we are blanketed in a good 6 inches of snow. Two days ago we were walking around n shorts and bathing suits outside in the mountains and now we are kind of storm-stayed. That's fine with us though - we needed a bit of a quiet break.

Elk - Furry antlers. You must keep your distance from elk or they will ram into you. They are seen on the sides of the road right in Jasper.
Mountain goats - They cluster together
Bighorn sheep - They run away from cars
Bald eagles - white heads and tails; rest of body is brown. There are 30,000 along the BC coast. We saw them frequently. They would try to attack raven nests but the ravens would chase them away.
Anemones - If you put your hand on one, it will stick. They look like plants but they are animals and they eat fish. Colours - red, blue, green, clear, pink.
Sea stars - Ochre stars are most common. If you cut a sea star in half, it will grow into two sea stars. They can live out of water for 6-8 hours. They are the top predator because nothing eats them.
Orcas - They swim in pods. There are three kinds near Vancouver. They are dangerous. BIG teeth.
Banana slugs - Slimy. Six inches long. They decompose decaying plants and trees.
Hawk - They are bold.
River otter - They eat sea urchins on their backs. They hang out in groups.
Columbian ground squirrels - They squeak or cheep. They have short tails and live in burrows in the ground.

We have also seen dogs, cats, cows, horses, crabs, herit crabs, sculpin fish, squirrels, chipmunks, birds, goats on a roof.

We have not seen bears, moose, cougars, mountain caribou - but we think we saw cougar footprints and scat.

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