View Full Version : Cruel Prank of Nature, tough time for Wildlife!

04-18-2003, 10:05 AM
Many of the woodland survivors of winter such as deer, birds, rabbits...have used up their winter fat reserves, and the one cruel prank of nature is when in early spring temps drop....much rain falls and freezes.

The ice enshrouds everything, and I do mean everything. Stepping on grass is like stepping on glass, and you hear blades crunching beneath you. Flat areas are sheer ice and you are likely to fall. Branches are frozen, life saving tree buds are wrapped in ice as are new fruits....


This happend to us two days ago....and we hear temps are supposed to rise to the 50's today and tomorrow. Those that love wild critters and birds are certainly hoping so. I picked up extra feed today to spread out...but with temps cold, no food sources available due to ice, and fat reserves gone...many birds are not going to make it, and any weak animals such as low reserve deer are likely to starve.

Its a tough time, and I thought some would appreciate seeing this first hand....

frozen blossom berries-

frozen tree buds, especially important to ruffed grouse-


04-18-2003, 10:23 AM
Cool pics Larry!
We often have that happen here. It could be well below zero one day and well above it the next. I know quite a few farmers who will throw out extra feed for the forest critters.

04-18-2003, 12:08 PM
We went through this last week with a few days of ice storms here in western michigan. Trees toppling over sounding like a madman with a baseball bat in a crystal shop.
Although a spectacular site having everything coated in ice it sure is tough on the wildlife.

Thank you Larry for bringing this to everyone's attention. I dont think people realize just how devistating ice storms such as this is to the total ecological system. I myself worked as a wetland anaylst for 10 years prior to my becoming disabled. Mapping the wetlands across the country seeing what man has done with its resources and how it has effected the delicate balance of nature.

Thanks again Larry!


04-18-2003, 12:35 PM
Wow, awesome pics! I've never seen anything like that in real life, and I thought Central NY was icy at times! Poor woodland creatures... hope it gets better soon!

04-18-2003, 03:06 PM
Great photos, Larry.

We get icestorms on occasion here, too, but for us it's mostly snow, sometimes a couple of feet of it, especially in early spring. We always put out extra feed for the critters. Last week we had a foggy cold rain/snow mixture coming down and we had 10 mule deer in our front yard at our salt lick. Awesome site, but I felt so sorry for them, but good times are just around the corner for those that make it.

04-18-2003, 03:45 PM
I feed the birds year round and put out corn or deer blocks for the other wild critters.There is this one doe with a broken leg..so I especially like to feed her! She has babies every year..and seems to get along pretty well. We had 40 inches of snow this season (which is a lot for Va) and I am sure the animals appreciated the extra food!

Paul Hopkinson
04-18-2003, 06:22 PM
Larry these images remind me from when I lived in the north of England many years ago. Just about every Winter we had a similar situation with the cold weather.
Ponds and lakes are frozen over, we even had to beak the ice for the ducks and even the fish!

Great pics,

04-18-2003, 06:29 PM
Oh that is so sad!!

I am glad that peole like your self are able and willing to help feed the hungry animals!! I live in Florida and only saw snow one time in my life!! This very heartbreaking to see for me, I can't kill a dreaded roach more or less think of those poor animals!!

I pray it clears up soon for those animals not able to find food by other means!!


04-18-2003, 07:56 PM
Its just now starting to melt, with chunks falling off trees. Sounds eery as you hear the commotion in the forests.

Over 12,000 homes have been without electricity for two days, and from the news may not get back up for a couple days. Over 29 companies dealing with electricity are at work. The weight of the ice has caused trees all over to fall, power lines to break, and so on.

While it appears to be melting, they are talking rainshowers tonight into tomorrow....and hopefully the temps stay warm enough to not make matters worse.

Its interesting to see the moods of nature...and what dependents sometimes have to deal with to survive.