Thursday Two Questions Meme - Wild Animals



While taking a hike along the coastal trail about a week ago I came across the above sign and was surprised to learn that there were coyotes roaming the trails. What I found interesting about the sign is that they warn it is illegal to feed wildlife in National Parks. This particular area is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

I find it interesting that they need to warn us because, let's face it, how many people would be sitting around feeding coyotes? Granted I feed the squirrels, which by the way is also illegal but I don't think I'd be feeding other wildlife. My two questions are:

1. Have you ever encountered wildlife such as coyotes, deer etc... up close and personal?

2. If you have, how did you react?

For me-

1. Yes, I encountered a deer in Marin a few years back. We came upon each other on a hiking trail and were about 20 feet apart. It was a bit unnerving however I walked away very slowly while keeping my eyes on the deer. A few seconds later, he was gone. I've always heard, never run so I kept my cool.


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Comments

Kass said…
A very skinny red fox was wandering around my cabin and she looked so desperately hungry I put out a bowl of stew for her. She looked at me, took a bite of meat and ran off.
Your photos are quite stunning and I can relate to the love of photography.

1. My parents went hunting and brought home a baby fox whose mother was killed. We raised it until it was ready to be released. I have taken some pics of deer I spotted along the roadside. 2. I try to be as still as possible. I don't want to startle them.
Marilynne said…
I live in the west so it's more likely that I meet wild animals. I've learned to respect their need for space. When I worked at a nuclear waste site it was even more important to respect their space. However, I saw horses, deer, coyotes and eagles. They looked fine to me, but I left them alone.

Respecting a wild animal's space is more important than giving them food.
boromax said…
When we lived on the Former Fort Ord (near Monterey) a couple of years ago we saw coyotes frequently, bobcats occasionally, deer and wild turkeys almost every day - plus the occasional skunk or oppossum, and regular raccoon sightings.

Once when walking my dog (pug named Bossley) a coyote crossed our trail about 50 feet in front of us, glancing over at us then disappearing into the brush. We continued cautiously forward and when we got to that spot in the trail I looked in the direction the coyote had gone. He was standing about 30 feet off the trail watching us pass. He did not molest us, so we continued our walk. Very exciting, though!!

We hear of mountain lion sightings pretty often here, but I've never seen one myself (yet).
Luna Miranda said…
i have encountered a few animals in the wild--a monitor lizard, snakes, monkeys.

i kept my distance, i let them pass quietly.
♥-Icy BC-♥ said…
If I encounter a coyote, I would not think about feeding it..and I only seen deer from a safe distance.

That's really an interesting sign to see. Who in the world would want to feed a coyote?
Cathy Kennedy said…
Please folks, don't feed the wild life no matter how adoreable they are. This teaches them bad habits and may even cause a normally peaceful animal to attack someone who doesn't want to feed them. They are 'wild' hence they need to take care of themselves.

Once while hiking in the Smoky's a young bear cub saundered across our path. It could care less that we were there, but I can tell you, I was scared stiff. We all froze in our path until he left. We were fortunate.

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Gale said…
I used to live in the mountains, so we saw deer on the road all the time, raccoons would raid our squirrel feeders, and we even had bear stop by (but unfortunately I wasn't there to see that). I always enjoyed our encounters with the wildlife. The racoons were the best...there were some shiny Christmas stuff we had on our porch and I got to watch one play with it, and it was curious about me, and came up to our screen door and put its paws on it, and I put my hands on its paws through the screen. It wasn't scared of me at all. It was a very cool experience.
Self Sagacity said…
You did the right thing by being still. I was still/ stiff too.:-)
1&2) We ran into a wild boar while walking our trails once. She was huge and was running down the hill towards us. I was so frighten, I screamed my head off! I think the whole Gualdalupe Trails heard me. It must have frightened her enough that she changed direction and ran off...which was our lucky day! She could have ran us over easily. And that would have been a mess.

What about raccoons? I had written a post on the attack on SS- Visitors From the Woods. I think they can be mean.
Lui said…
Yes, I encountered some snakes, deer, monkeys and alligators! And you're right, stand still, or move slowly out of the way! I also prayed for my safety and the animal. After all, in their eyes, we are also "wild" to them.
Ann said…
I can't say that I've ever encountered a wild animal up close. The closest I've gotten is maybe a deer running out in front of my car while I was driving.
SquirrelQueen said…
I agree with Cathy's comment, it is a very bad idea to ever feed wild animals. Also when food is too plentiful it can lead to over populations which in turn can lead to diseases to restore nature's balance. I have seen this happen to a population of squirrels.

I have had many up close and personal encounters with animals. I have done a lot of backpacking and have been within a few feet of coyotes, a black bear, a weseal and many deer. The black bear was the most tense as we suprised each other but we both started backing up and went our seperate ways. Remain calm and don't make any sudden moves, they are as curious about us as we are of them.

Similar incident with the coyote, I walked around the corner of an old farm house and came face to face with him. I stood still, he ran.
DoanLegacy said…
Lovely header!

1) I haven't come close to wild life animals just yet.

2) If I ever encounter a wild animal, my instinct would be gone the other way!
Sharkbytes (TM) said…
If it's a trail, I want to hike it! I'm cool with any wildlife except maybe a grizzly.
Daisy said…
We have a few alligators that live in the little lake behind our house (they are common in south FL). They generally stay away from people, but once in a while someone will get the idea to feed them. Once they lose their fear of humans, they become a danger and must be removed. I don't think anything good happens to them when they are "removed."
JamericanSpice said…
You'd be surprised at the amount of people who feed the wild animals.

We came upon bears in the road. They walked pass our car window and we drove away from them and then stopped and take photos. This was in Montana. It was weird that people thought it was ok to just mill around with them.

I have no idea how I'd react if I came upon a wild animal until I do. I think I'd be really calm and still and then just try to make myself walk away slowly.
Wow, reading all these great stories shows me just how brave all of you really are. Living in the city, we don't come across many wild animals so I enjoyed all of your comments.

Daisy, feeding an alligator is NOT something I would ever in a million years do. I am deathly afraid of them. You and Harley stay away from those critters, okay?

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