Hidden Lakes press

Hidden Lakes Press

Information for Recreation in Colorado and the Rockies

Wildlife Photos

Most people enjoy wild birds and put out feeders to attract them. The most common birds are juncos, chickadees, and pine siskins. Grosbeaks, nuthatches, and jays also frequent feeders. Late spring and summer brings hummingbirds. Band-tail pigeons are attracted to seed feeders.

Wildlife is one of the pleasures of living in the mountains. The most abundant animal is the Rocky Mountain elk. It's a common sight to see a group bedded on residential lawns. Mule deer are common. They're not as numerous as elk here but there are plenty.

The Mount Evans elk herd is among the largest herds in Colorado. Because of its excellent bull/cow ratio seven-point bulls like these are not an uncommon sight. Because of limited hunting opportunities, a banana-belt climate, and green lawns for grazing the herd is probably larger than desirable. The abundance of elk and deer is an invitation to large predators like coyotes and mountain lions.

Squirrels, rabbits, and free-roaming house cats provide food for small predators like coyotes and this fox. Having become accustomed to humans and dogs, they are a common sight. Coyotes account for the frequently-posted "missing dog" signs in the neighborhood.

Black bears are common but due to their nocturnal habits are rarely seen. In late summer, though, they begin bulking up for the coming winter. Bird feeders filled with sunflower seeds are a good source of the fats they need. Trouble is the practice of making feeders available encourages bears to feel at ease around people and homes. Feeders should be placed where they won't be accessible to bears. Until residents wait until pick up day to put out trash, garbage cans will also invite a hungry bruin to scrounge for a less than healthy diet.