Going Batty

Following my visit to Umpqua National Forest, I needed to scope out my other known field site, Big Flat Campground in Smith River National Recreation Area.

A few weekends ago, I jaunted up to the campground to check out the bats. They greeted me as enthusiastically as any wild animal would…they didn’t notice me, at least not obviously. To be honest, I was a little concerned that they weren’t in the boxes yet, as it was very quiet when I walked up. After a few minutes, I could hear the chattering of little bats in their roosts. A photograph shooting up into the roost confirmed, with about fifty or so little bat faces looking down at me.

Happy little bat faces!

Happy little bat faces!

After setting up the bat detector to capture the chattering social calls, and the echolocation calls that would be heard when they started to emerge, I headed out to set up my campsite. The early season meant I had to drive to the only open campground in the area, which was a little ways away from the bats in their boxes. I even attempted to capture some photos of bats as they emerged for evening foraging. I don’t quite have the patience for wildlife photography it seems, and I kept missing the shot. Those little guys move pretty fast!

DSC_2495

Big Flat Campground bat boxes

My best shot at catching them in action

My best attempt at catching them in action

While up in the area, I spent some time hiking around. I check out Stout Grove, one of the redwood groves in the area, part of the Jedidiah Smith State Park. The walk was short, only about 1 mile round trip, with a little loop through the trees. It was a cool, but sunny afternoon and there were several families making their way through the redwood giants. I also revisited a trail I had done before, part of the Bald Hills trail. I spotted a little chipmunk dashing its way across the trail, and an unidentified orange and black bird rustling through some underbrush. I tried to grab a picture, but he was too quick for me. I’m leaning towards some kind of oriole, though I am not sure.

DSC_2462

Stout Grove Loop Trail

View from the Bald Hills trail

View from the Bald Hills trail

DSC_2487

Little Bald Hills Trail and a place to rest

DSC_2474

Wildflowers along the trail.

Wildflowers along the trail

Wildflowers along the trail

Wildflowers along the trail

Wildflowers along the trail

An interesting tree along the trail, the bark was kind of peeling off and was really smooth.

An interesting tree along the trail, the bark was kind of peeling off and was really smooth.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s