Wednesday, 4 March 2015

#614 Snow Moon

Since the heaviest snow usually falls during this month, Native American and Canadian tribes of the north call
February's full moon the Full Snow Moon.  Some tribes referred to this moon as the Full Hunger Moon 
since harsh and frigid weather made hunting food difficult.  

Shown below, a Mule Deer doe slowly passes under last night's Full Snow Moon in the sub-zero cold.

The night before last, a snowstorm dumped over ten more inches on our studio headquarters at the foot of the Wind River Range in Wyoming.  We woke up this morning to -16 degrees temperatures and as usual, the first thing one thinks about are the animals . . . both domestic and wild.  We have horses, goats, poultry, and feral barn cats that share the property with a resident herd of mule deer and wintering pheasants.  At the base of heated buildings such as the studio, animals congregate because the temperature is actually a few degrees warmer.  We keep a water heater in a big rubber tub and put out hay and corn for the geese.  The chickens have a heat lamp in their coop and we enjoy fresh eggs in the winter because the light induces laying eggs.  While all of this is a necessity for the domestic animals, we are careful not to tame the deer which would inhibit their wildness and ability to survive . . . after all, in the big scheme of things, we are predators.

Below, are images taken at our place along the frozen Popo Agie River in Wyoming.  
Although the surface is frozen, the big river flows underneath to join the Wind River downstream.
This photo was taken from the studio deck this morning . . . below zero but sunny!


The barn protects horses, goats, and barn cats but on this sunny day, the warm sun will feel good on their backs.

Geese are amazingly adaptable to frigid weather and like all creatures, require an open source of water.  Water, in this climate, can freeze in less than an hour!
Below and at right, the big domestic geese are fed corn and hay is given to the deer when snow covers the ground.  Trish cries,"goose-goose-goose" and the geese come running!

Below, Trish and Penny enjoy a warm fire after chores are done.

Below, no sun yesterday but the deer, with their long winter's coat, nestled in the snow
and bedded down for warmth and the pheasant found morsels by scratching through the snow.

In the bleak midwinter, Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter, long ago.

                                                                                     - Christina G. Rossetti

Deer have always been a favorite subject.  Below is an early etching (1979) entitled, "First Snow".

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Blog, text, photos, drawings, and sculpture . . . © Sandy Scott and Trish

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