I got a nice european elk surprice on my trail camera. I’m usually go to trail cameras once a month for mainteinance. When the camera registers the movement, it send s me 2 low-res images, never the videos. So its always bit of surprize what i get from there. This time i got spontaneos laugh when opening the first 10-sec video when adult elk fills about quater of frame and stares at you. It was probaly 2 m away and the camera is about 2,8 m from the ground. So you can imagine the size of the animal. I also loved that the common cranes are calling same time, I know they are roughly 50 -70 meters away and tenous european aspen forest amplifies this call very nicely. It’s a male, note the antler bases on the forehead.
Some mornings are prettier than others. I woke up 5 am. The sky was clear, blackbird was singing and I decided to take a short bird watching trip (it’s a little part of our West Estonia birdwatching tour). The weather was very-very windy near the coast, but we still saw more than 35 species. Cranes, swans, lapwings, geese, cormorants were the most popular. #springmigration Be careful, enjoy the nature! Have a great day 🙂
Elk watching is considerably easy in spring and autumn (Sept-October). Some areas of Estonia are probably suffering because of high hunting limits and might be bit difficult to see them. Around Tallinn and west Estonia there are still many high success rate spots left and there is good chance to see them. Of course it’s a nature and nothing is guaranteed! More information of such wildlife watching daytrip you can find HERE.
Who is a gamekeeper?
Well, still no snow.. Atleast we have some sunny days! Some days ago I went for a little hike.. and I found something.. Here is an old gamekeeper’s log house. It’s 6km from small borough and not everyone knows where it actually is. Gamekeeper is like a main forester in certain area. Have you heard that in the last century we had gamekeepers all over Estonia? Actually, the first signs of gamekeepers are from 13th century, when landlords had their own forests. In the 19th century the forest management was more popular than before, so the gamekeepers became more important. They had their own log houses in the forests and they knew exactly, what was going on, how many different animals are there or who’s walking there. Estonian history is various and interesting. Would you like to know more? Our Lahemaa National Park tour is for people, who wish to…
Estonian smallest predator – least weasel
Have you heard about least weasel (ld. Mustela nivalis)? Least weasel is the smallest predator in Estonia and also in the world. Average body length in males is 130 to 260 mm (just to make you a little comparison – brown bear footprint is 130-250+mm). I have seen weasels only 2 times. These photos are made some years ago, it was a total surprise to see weasel running in the gravel road. I jumped out from my car and the weasel disappeared. About thirty seconds later the weasel came back with lunch in the mouth. Least weasel has brown back, tail and limbs; their chest is white. But in the winter they are all covered with white fur to hide from predators, so it’s not easy to notice them. Usually they eat different rodents, but they are also able to catch frogs, fish and small birds and it’s not a…
So I made myself a Christmas present and updated my trail cameras to 4G ones to get finally live information about observations. It took some time and finally last Sunday being semi-illish I managed to set them up at two spots in the forest. The first spot has been success for elks already for couple of years. So on Sunday there were lot of fresh moose footprints and droppings, so it was just matter of some climbing and testing. But the first visitor for that camera was lynx. Although I spend bit more time in the forest than avarage hobby photographer, I have not had any luck so far to get even miserable photo. I have had couple of lynx observations every year, but those have been short and unexpected. So it’s my lucky day then, even i didn’t press the shutter button i’m still happy to see that image.…
The European roe deer – cute and curious
So it’s time to introduce to you one of our most common mammal – the European roe deer (or also known as the western roe deer or just roe). In Estonia there are more than 100 000 roe deers, so it’s pretty much, isn’t it? Usually they are seen in the fields, so drivers must be very careful. Some of them are more curious than others. It’s quite easy to see them in Estonia, but… even if we have one of the best spots, we can’t guarantee you anything. It all depends on the weather and on the predators. Roebuck is a male roe deer and in the late winter to autumn they have antlers. In July, roe deers have mating season. Roe bucks are fighting and kicking with the antlers because of female roes. Would you like to see Estonian mammals? We have wildlife watching tour, let’s go!
Okay, so I have lately got some questions about bear watching and how it works. So it’s about 1h 45min drive from Tallinn and you have to be there by 4 or 5 pm depending of the season. I suggest to start at noon, have a lunch in Rakvere and also shop there for dinner. you have to take dinner with you and it’s going to be sandwiches or bakery or salat or some other stuff you like, but it’s quick to eat and unwrapping does not make much noise. So after parking the car there is a 15 min walk to the hide through the forest. We settle in and satrt waiting. Usually it takes few hours to wait before they come but you know, it’s nature, so sometimes they arrive 30 min after entering the hide sometimes in the middle of the night and sometimes they don’t show…
The moose (or eurasian elk!)
So, it’s time to share some photos of Estonian biggest mammal – Eurasian elk (or in America they say “moose”). They are mostly seen all over Estonia and the best time for that is in autumn when they have their mating season. But actually it doesn’t matter which season you come, it’s quite possible to see them all year round. We have wildlife watching tour! Book a tour and let’s see where the nature takes us
Fox on the roof
Last Friday went to photo assignement to the Museum of Coomunist crimes at Patarei prison in center of Tallinn and found a fox on the roof. It’s a 3 floor limestone building. Semi-abandoned, museum is just part of the building. Clearly it found a opening to enter the building and then found it’s way to the roof through roof windows. Foxes has become fairly common animals in Tallinn as we have lot of green areas and some forest areas around Tallinn have vanished and replased by private housing areas. But the fox was enjoying morning sun and was not disturbed by the gulls and crows that felt dangered by it’s presents. If you want to do some wildlife photography while visiting Tallinn, then we can meet for nature phtography day tour (foloow THIS link for details).