sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Sheep

There are a lot of different animals on the White Wolf Mine property on Arizona's Mogollon Rim. Since they're wild, they come and go as if they own the place - which in a real sense they do. I received reports from some of the guys who are pounding nails and working on the hovel that a herd of big horn sheep are in the area and have been recent arrivals to take advantage of a salt lick. I put out a large block of rock salt for the elk, deer, and apparently for the sheep now.

Carnivores get salt from the animals they kill but herbivores find it more difficult to fill their salt needs. Thus the lick.

One of the guys (no doubt he was 'on the clock' - possibly on overtime) got close enough to snap a few photos, but this one is the best. 


The way the property lays, the shack is just down from the summit and there is a valley, that I own below that. There's an occasional stream in the bottom, and it empties into Clear Creek about a quarter mile away (the larger creek in the area). Clear Creek flows through a gorge cut through millions of years. 

In the lower property, meaning lower in the small valley, there is a lot of rimrock and  the sheep have been bedding down there.

Photos of Clear Creek:




30 comments:

  1. I've enjoyed being around sheep over the years. As long as you are below them they are calm. Get above them and they freak.

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    1. Yes, they're cool. I wasn't aware that they'd get fidgety if you were above them and they were calm if you were below them.

      (Dogs look up to us, cats look down on us, pigs treat us as equals - Churchill)

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  2. Replies
    1. There are a lot of beautiful corners of the US of A. This is just one. And of course, it's mine.

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  3. Quiet beautiful and peaceful. I bet the critters in the area will be glad when all the hammering noise goes away.

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    1. They don't care. The elk are the most curious of the beasts and used to be in the excavation area the day after blasting inspecting it to see what happened. You almost have to whack them with a stick or something to get them to move.

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  4. I'm a bit jealous of your variety. We have numerous whitetail deer and turkeys and a seemingly endless supply of coyotes. A few years back, a fellow living west of here was raising elk on his place. He went through a sloppy divorce and in fit of pique, his estranged wife left a gate open allowing several to escape. My wife's uncle, who farmed 500 acres nearby, said he would spot one occasionally on his land. The ear tags gave away that they weren't wild.

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    1. I have seen coues deer (white tail) and mule deer on the property. The coues deer aren't much bigger than a german shepherd (the dog, not the big busted blonde with lederhosen). The deer are more skittish than the elk, the big horn sheep are nervous, the mountain lions (real cougars - not mutton dressed up like lamb, planning to cut a young guy out of the crowd at a bar) look at you the way any cat would - is if you're not nearly as cool as they are - and who can argue? Technically that's true of all varieties of cougar.

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    2. There have been rumors of cougars(the four footed kind) around here, but nothing concrete. When it comes to wild kitties, bobcats are it.

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    3. We have bobcats too, but it's said by the AZ Game and Fish Dept. that cougars (four footed) are more numerous than bobcats in my area.

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  5. You need to open up a retirement home so we can come and visit.

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    1. What I should do is to buy more land if it comes available in the area and put in an RV park for my friends. All that it would require is to pull in electricity and dig in a larger septic system. Since I apparently have two friends, it wouldn't be too difficult. There is an RV set up like that at Clint's Well 34.555169, -111.315665, but it 'lacks privacy'.

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  6. Great photos and post, LL.
    The photos of Clear Creek would make great puzzles.
    God bless.

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    1. I don't know how you transfer a photo to a puzzle, but that would be fun to do for Christmas gifts for grandkids.

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    2. Don't know if you shop anywhere like Amazon, but they have a seller called Phuzzles, that has very good ratings.

      If you know of an actual photo shop - don't know if they exist any more - they may provide a service like that, too.

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    3. The whole world shops at Amazon. They even deliver (FedEx and UPS) in the back of beyond at the White Wolf Mine. I'll check out Phuzzles.

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  7. We've seen so many deer in the last six months that my wife has stopped cooing when she sees them. They're *everywhere* here, along with the damn Canadian Geese in the winter. Those damn things poop all over the place, and have given Pebbles the stare-down when we were out walking.

    Only see the elk here when you're at 7500' or better, or so it seems to me. The big bull elks still get my wife's attention, and she's learned to notice their coloration so she doesn't say "Wow...that's a REALLY big deer!" any longer.

    We've only seen the sheep and goats in Rocky Mountain National Park, but I wouldn't be surprised if they come down into the canyons to forage.

    Quite a few bears here, out of the city, but only saw one or two. They congregate near the big cornfields in the fall, and there was a family of them across the road from the country house in a big stand of trees.

    No personal sightings of big cats, but they're here and my forestry buddies have run smack dab into them more than a few times. The cats always left the area, as the YUGE deer population keeps them well fed.

    And then there's the momma badger at the country house in Bellvue. Never saw her, but heard her plenty of times at night.

    The quality of the night time noises here is far superior to that of Long Beach.....

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    1. Long Beach night music is all sirens, gunshots and traffic noise.

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    2. You forgot take-offs and landings at LGB......

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  8. Very beautiful.

    What's your take on hunting? The last time I glassed a ram (rare occasion) -- a big old thing which I'd stalked, thank you very much, I didn't pull the trigger.

    I guess if I was hungry I would've. Anyway, can we shoot an elk at the WWM, please?

    Thanks in advance.

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    1. As anyone who shot an elk knows. The difficulty begins once the bullet hits the elk. There is a lot of work to cleaning and processing an elk. Fortunately for you, there is an elk processing truck (sometimes several) parked about ten miles away. They skin, butcher, package and freeze the animal for you (for a fee). You just have to get the elk (roughly the size of a horse) to them.

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    2. I know it's a deal... elk all year, to boot.

      We've reached the "no more venison, please dad" stage at the compound.

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    3. You need to raise chickens there at the compound. Put the cadet to work building a coop. A few 2x4's and some chicken wire and you're in business. Eggs and chickens for frying. If you were in Kentucky, the fried chicken might taste better. I've never heard of "Texas fried chicken" but I have eaten fried chicken in Texas. Of course, the cadet would tire of eggs, chicken and venison eventually - but it will tide him over until you bring back 1,500 pounds of elk in the white truck. What's that - 10 igloo coolers filled with frozen elk?

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  9. For the last few years, we have stopped placing salt blocks for the wildlife.
    Instead we have used a bagged cow and calf mineral lick that we buy from the local feed store. Cost is roughy $25 for a fifty pound bag. I dump half a bag when the snow is just about gone and the rest of the bag around the 4th of July. We use this, as this was recommended by a wildlife biologist. I usually pour the mix on the same old stump, in the last few years most of the stump has been eaten and a goodly amount of the dirt around the stump too. There is a large percentage of salt in the mix to go along with the minerals. So the animals get the salt that they need also.

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    1. Another reason we stopped with the salt blocks is that one of our game cameras took pictures of a bear carrying a block away.
      And one of the other camps in the area uses bagged salt pellets that are for use in water softeners.

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    2. Jon, the picture of the bear carrying the salt block away would be priceless! And I can see it happening. It might be better to use bagged mineral lick. I've never heard of it and it's worth exploring. Thank you for the recommendation.

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  10. You NEED a lizard. If anyone should have a Godzilla, it's you. There must be a ton of them running around there!

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    1. I have yet to see a lizard up at the White Wolf Mine. My sense is that the climate doesn't suit them. Same with snakes. Though I am sure that there are snakes up there, it's cool for most of the year and reptiles don't thrive there in the same way they do in lower elevations or the desert.

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