Last week, my wife and I took a trip over to Nebraska to pick up a horse Amy had a trainer working on. It was a weekday, and we both had to work, so we didn’t get out of the driveway until fairly late in the day.
By the time we were rolling down the county roads in eastern Wyoming, the sun was getting pretty low in the sky. It was still an hour or so before sunset, but the wildlife was surprisingly active along the sides of the road.
We saw more deer and antelope than I’ve seen on a trip like that in a while. I don’t know what the Game and Fish has found in terms of big game populations in the state, but over on the eastern side, it seems like it’s got to be up from previous years. And it wasn’t just adult deer and antelope we were seeing.
Not long after leaving the driveway, we saw a doe antelope that looked agitated. As we got closer, she kept looking at us, then over her shoulder, then back at us. When we got even with her, we realized she was worried about her newborn fawn, which was standing on its spindly little legs, quite possibly for the first time in its life. We kept rolling so we wouldn’t cause the new family any additional stress.
A few miles later, we came to a stream that went under the road, and I slowed down because I spotted a doe white-tailed deer on the side of the highway. She flipped her tail up when she saw us, and I caught a glimpse of another tail a little bit behind her. That second tail was attached to a little spotted fawn.
I sometimes see baby critters when I drive across Wyoming, but seldom two babies in such a short time. I hope that’s a good sign for the wildlife populations. If nothing else, it was really cool to see those young animals on our road trip.