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Mpls, MN, United States

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Incidents & Accidents

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


So today my dad and I were standing in the kitchen when I spotted the coyote just outside the back fence. As we watched, he sat down to scratch himself, stood back up, and sauntered to the corner where our fence meets the neighbors'. He disappeared for a second, and when he reappeared, he was inside their backyard, skulking along the inside of the fence that separates our two properties. His goal was obvious: the quail family that frequents my parents' yard--two parents and about twelve adolescent chicks, who were happily lunching in the shade. The coyote didn't seem to be in any hurry, padding toward them, but the quail were certainly uncomfortable; in an impressive display of preserving its genetic contribution to the world, one of the adults stepped toward the coyote, placing herself between the coyote and her offspring, while the latter hopped about in consternation. The other parent jumped the wire barrier at the bottom of the fence to distract the coyote from the other side of the fence. The coyote slowly pursued the quail to the corner of the yard, as my dad and I rushed to the other window to follow the drama. I grabbed my camera; there was a window between us, but he was only about five feet away. That seemed to startle him, and he wandered back out to the trail behind the house, where he disappeared.

Dad and I were curious to see how he'd gotten into the neighbors' yard, so we headed out there to look at the fence. As I climbed the hill in the back of the yard, I saw the coyote again, still on the trail, but this time running toward me! Well, running, anyway, and in my direction. It spooked me so badly (okay, okay, I'm a city girl--and I have the traces of a lingering childhood fear of big dogs!) that I shrieked and ran back toward the house. The coyote seemed at least as spooked as I was; he took off running up the wash and into the hills behind the house. I felt bad about startling him... once my heart rate returned to normal.

I did get a few pictures, and this time I haven't circled him; if you look at the large versions, you should be able to spot him.

Also, earlier, a road- runner came up onto the back porch to enjoy the shade of the ping pong table. I had never seen one so close; they're huge! I think he was more interested in his reflection than in me, but he spooked before I could get a very good picture. I wish he had his tail up for you, but he kept moving it up and down, maybe to show the strange, featherless biped his mighty prowess!


Ern said...

Ooh, desert drama!

But the coyote needs to eat too, you know. Just sayin'. ;)

Curly Sue said...

Wow, Wiley Coyote and the Roadrunner. You just need an Acme Anvil and you'll be all set.

Yes is a World said...

wow. i'd love to see either up close. i guess i need to spend more time outside of the city.