You can herdly tell

I had quite a surprise last night!

As I got up from my computer to do the cat stuff a bit earlier than usual – the only reason I happened to see this while there was still enough light – I caught movement out the north facing window.

Three deer had been startled and were bolting away from the feeding station, which is around the corner of the house from where I was looking, running through the old garden area and maple grove.

Did I say three? Oh! There’s number four…

… five and six…

… eight! … no… nine-ten-eleven-too-many-to-count!!!!

The most deer we’ve ever seen at the same time in the feeding station was 7. Last night, there were at least a dozen, but so many bolted so fast, it could have been more.

Then I saw and heard what startled them.

A large truck, pulling what looked like the sort of trailer that’s used to haul cattle (hard to tell in the dark) started driving past our place. The deer, however, were heading in the same direction the truck was, and I guess the driver saw them heading for the road. I don’t think any of them had time to reach and start crossing the road, but the first ones I saw had to have been close. I saw the driver slow right now, then hitting the air horn to scare the deer away from running in front of the truck.

It was an amazing sight!

When I went outside to top of the food and water for the outside cats, I grabbed some extra deer feed to the feeding station. We normally put some out only in the morning, but this late in the winter, the deer must be having a harder time finding anything to eat. In the few minutes it took me to head outside and grab the feed bucket, I startled another deer away from the feeding station as I came around the corner of the house. About an hour or two later, I went past the darkened living room and caught movement outside the window. I’m thinking my going between the dark living room and lit dining room startled at least one deer.

For the last few days, I’ve been seeing a lot of trail cam videos of year jumping the fence, so I expected to see lot of deer this morning.

I didn’t.

In fact, I only saw a lone deer go by just before 3:30 in the morning.

This would be why I didn’t see any deer.

With so many tracks already filling the area, plus a light snowfall overnight, you can’t tell that so many deer were here at once.

While the snow under the crab apple trees is full of deer tracks, you can still make out the path the deer have made as they cross the garden to the other spot they jump the fence at.

These are the trails they’ve made in the other direction.

I don’t usually see them coming from this direction, though it does happen once in a while.

I love how they’ve taken advantage of the trees being cleared and cleaned up, and are now going in between a couple of rows.

One of these days, we’re going to pick up another trail cam and mount it on the house, facing the feeding station. 🙂 It’ll have to be set to still shots instead of video, or the memory card would be filled up in no time!

The Re-Farmer

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