Last week I used a headwind to sneak up on some feeding raccoons in Devils Hammock. It wasn't hard to do. I simply walked quietly into the swooshing breeze and let it mask my sound and blow my scent behind me.
I didn't know my quarry would be raccoons. I kind of expected to see wild hogs, since it was very late in the day and the dirt track followed a swampy, pondy area. Devils Hammock is loaded with feral hogs and the swampy area is loaded with hog delights, so when the wind brought sounds of splashing ahead, I expected pigs.
Instead, I was treated to this coon feeding in the marsh. I crouched down and waited and the coon came steadily towards me.
At some point, it noticed me and disappeared. I thought I'd bungled a good opportunity by moving in too close. Then, after a moment or two of quiet, there was a bustling in a sweet gum tree nearby.
Turns out, it wasn't A coon, but three or four coons ... a family group. The light was so low by then, I had to use flash to get a sharp pic. My apologies for the laser eyes on these young coons.
After I got a shot or two, I switched over to video since it is more light sensitive and baby coons sure seemed to warrant a little video time.
I love the waggy tail of the adult coon in the tree. It was going gangbusters as they jockeyed for position, ... seeking safety in the tree cover, but needing to see what the strange creature was doing.
I watched them for awhile as the light faded and they watched me right back. When I had imposed on them enough, I turned and began hiking to the JEEP.
The wind followed me, blowing my scent far ahead, ... announcing my impending arrival to those with the nose to know.
In other news ... My soccer girls got clobbered in their first game against PK Yonge school in Gainesville. They played their first game (some of them literally first game EVER) in a steady downpour (thanks IDA) against a well oiled machine team.
We looked kinda rough, but we lasted til the 4th quarter before the 8-0 mercy rule took affect with a final goal by the excellent PK team.
Today, we have our second game, a home game against St. Frances Catholic School ... one of the best teams in our division. I'll let you know how it goes ...
Junior plays his last high school football game ever this Friday night. He's a senior and the final game has arrived. I'll have something to say about that too.
He will immediately switch over to basketball, so it will be even crazier around here because for some reason, basketball games have to go on at a 3 game a week pace.