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  1. #1
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    Jun 2005
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    Illinois
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    Animals! Animals!

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    The school year's starting again .... and geese are everywhere... but I am finding this week that if I MAAAAAa! at them in the most obnoxious loud way I can, it helps clear my sinuses and they go waddling off to the right! (Drivers shold be grateful since I'm on a path right next to the road and they wander there, too...)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    My animal of the week, this week, is a pair of Sandhill Cranes I flushed from the road ditch in a swampy area, right next to me. Was riding the single speed on pavement, so the birds never heard me. These are normally very wary birds and you seldom get so close to them. I could actually feel the wind from their flapping wings, though. Made a great ride even greater.

  3. #3
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    Jul 2003
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    Interesting, nwg. The Sandhill Cranes here are more used to people, I guess, as we often ride RIGHT by them on the bike trail. My favorite was a pair and their one youngster (only a little smaller than the parents) I'd see almost every ride for awhile, but alas, they seem to have moved on. We find them to be quite tame, but we love seeing them!

    Today I saw a couple of hawks very close to the trail. I am still surprised how many hawks I see in this part of Florida. In fact, one flew down and perched on the fence around the pool here at the RV park when DH and I were cooling down after our ride today. We watched him/her for a good long time and got amazingly close before he flew up into a palm tree!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Illinois
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    Quote Originally Posted by emily_in_nc View Post
    Interesting, nwg. The Sandhill Cranes here are more used to people, I guess, as we often ride RIGHT by them on the bike trail. My favorite was a pair and their one youngster (only a little smaller than the parents) I'd see almost every ride for awhile, but alas, they seem to have moved on. We find them to be quite tame, but we love seeing them!

    Today I saw a couple of hawks very close to the trail. I am still surprised how many hawks I see in this part of Florida. In fact, one flew down and perched on the fence around the pool here at the RV park when DH and I were cooling down after our ride today. We watched him/her for a good long time and got amazingly close before he flew up into a palm tree!

    I had red winged blackbirds dive bomb me ... 'til I clipped the straps on the camera that was mounted on my helmet. Seems they thought they were wings and I was invading the territory... today the geese stuck to the fields. The only thing blocking the path was... Click image for larger version. 

Name:	truck on path aug 21.jpg 
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ID:	18347 ... yes, I've shared the picture with Facilities and Services...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    1,124
    Seeing a lot of fawns, this week. Some does in our area even had twins. The fawns are big enough now to probably fend for themselves, but, like the adults, are unpredictable when I encounter them while riding. I have a bell on all of my bikes. Works great for bears and for deer. The deer tend to run the other way when I ring the bell, rather than jump out in front of me as they sometimes do when I don't have the bell to ring. Some of the guys I know think it's kind of sissy to have a bell on their bike and get a good chuckle out of me having a bell on all my bikes, but I find a bell to be a very handy item around wildlife. Pedestrians, too, of course.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    6,716
    Speaking of animals, an alligator on Hilton Head (very near me) killed a woman this week. She was walking her dog near its pond.

    A little background. Sea Pines Plantation, where she lived, is a gated community where the houses start at upwards of half a million dollars. In fact, a lot are probably double that. The houses are built on the golf course. And the golf course is built amongst the ponds that are the natural home of hundreds of alligators.

    This is why I stay away from all water except ocean water with my dogs. And I still pay attention then. Gators use the shallows as wildlife corridors, and the salt water helps with parasites. I will never understand or condone the logic of real estate developers who decided to turn wetland habitat into prime real estate for the filthy wealthy. The alligators belong there. We don't. It's sad this happened. But attacks are increasing. And this is why.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
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    You probably remember my bad experience riding road bikes on HHI, where we were almost arrested for riding on the street, instead of the path with the kids, golfers, and other assorted tourists. This was at that gated place at the end of the island, where we had won a condo stay at an auction. So, is that Sea Pines?
    But, I am not sure if I ever shared the other exciting event that happened there. This was when we were still mountain biking. We drove down there with 4 bikes, as there was a well known mountain biking place on our way home, a little north of Hilton Head. While we were still on the island, in the gated area, we noted a little trail, so we rode there. We were about 1/4 of a mile down the trail, when a gator slinked out of the woods. I turned the bike around and I never rode that damn mountain bike so fast! I didn't see any water, but I am betting there were ponds in the woods by the trail. When we got back to the street, we saw a very small no bikes" sign.
    I lived in Florida for almost 5 years, and I never saw one, including some teenage times of swimming in the canals.
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  8. #8
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    Jun 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    You probably remember my bad experience riding road bikes on HHI, where we were almost arrested for riding on the street, instead of the path with the kids, golfers, and other assorted tourists. This was at that gated place at the end of the island, where we had won a condo stay at an auction. So, is that Sea Pines?
    But, I am not sure if I ever shared the other exciting event that happened there. This was when we were still mountain biking. We drove down there with 4 bikes, as there was a well known mountain biking place on our way home, a little north of Hilton Head. While we were still on the island, in the gated area, we noted a little trail, so we rode there. We were about 1/4 of a mile down the trail, when a gator slinked out of the woods. I turned the bike around and I never rode that damn mountain bike so fast! I didn't see any water, but I am betting there were ponds in the woods by the trail. When we got back to the street, we saw a very small no bikes" sign.
    I lived in Florida for almost 5 years, and I never saw one, including some teenage times of swimming in the canals.
    I remember the story of being hassled about riding off the bike paths. Huge groups of people on cruisers milling about. No place for a road or mountainbike. Yuck. I didn't know about the gator siting. I would probably fall off my bike and be eaten if that happened.


    Was it Pinckney Island? I was there last year, and posted it. I think you may have commented, but didn't mention the gators. In fact, I avoid the ponds because there are huge alligators everywhere. I've never seen a 'no bikes' sign. But again, I stay away from anything iffy. (I'm seriously terrified of alligators. They are a cross between a dragon and a dinosaur).
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
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    Surly Karate Monkey!!!

  9. #9
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    Feb 2005
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    Concord, MA
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    No, we actually did ride on Pickney Island, and it was fine, no gators! The gator incident happened right on HHI, on a little bitty trail in a neighborhood.
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  10. #10
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    Jul 2003
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    That alligator story was all over the news here in Florida. Gave me chills, since I walk my small dog all the time here in Florida. There is a pond here in the RV park, but it is full of ducks, which I suspect wouldn't go there (or still be alive) if there were gators. I don't walk Paisley close to it, just in case. I have never seen a gator in the three winters and the past year that we've been here, anywhere in the area, despite many ponds about. Just as glad for that!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  11. #11
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    Jun 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by emily_in_nc View Post
    That alligator story was all over the news here in Florida. Gave me chills, since I walk my small dog all the time here in Florida. There is a pond here in the RV park, but it is full of ducks, which I suspect wouldn't go there (or still be alive) if there were gators. I don't walk Paisley close to it, just in case. I have never seen a gator in the three winters and the past year that we've been here, anywhere in the area, despite many ponds about. Just as glad for that!
    The thing about gators is they are ambush hunters. You don't usually see them. Ducks, egrets, and everything else co-habit with the alligators in our waters. But every ecosystem is a little different.

    I've always referred to myself as irrationally afraid of the alligators. But still.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
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    Surly Karate Monkey!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    No, we actually did ride on Pickney Island, and it was fine, no gators! The gator incident happened right on HHI, on a little bitty trail in a neighborhood.
    Wow! That tends to make the point, though.

    Pinkney Island has a lot of them. Glad you didn't have any problems. (Again, there usually isn't a problem). Pinckney doesn't allow pets. Even leashed ones. That may keep them a little more stable.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
    Specialized Romin Saddles


    Surly Karate Monkey!!!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    Animals are part of bicycling no matter where you live and ride. Believe it or not, I was actually attacked by a pair of nesting Canada geese who decided to take up residence at our apartment complex in Chicago. Rode past them and one actually flew up and whacked me on my head with its wings a couple of times and whacked me hard. Another example of why we should always wear a helmet.

 

 

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