Creatures Great and Small – Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge

There are many mammals to see at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in Montana, I haven’t seen them all yet but I hope to one day. On this last trip I saw Moose, Elk, Skunks, Ground Squirrels, Chipmunks, Foxes, White-tailed and Mule Deer, Yellow-bellied Marmots, and Pronghorns.

Moose with calf

Moose with calf near an Aspen grove

It was a first for me to be able to photograph a Moose (Alces alces) with her calf, they had moved up from the gravel road to stand near an Aspen grove at one of the cottages at Lakeview where the headquarters of the refuge is located. I envy the residents there because they get to see Moose often but I was extremely happy to have the opportunity to see and create images of them.

Ground Squirrel - Uinta perhaps?

Ground Squirrel – Uinta perhaps?

Just from my observations there appears to be several species of Ground Squirrels on the refuge, I believe this one might be a Uinta Ground Squirrel but I could be wrong and would appreciate an ID on the species. I enjoy hearing the squirrels calling and seeing them scurrying around in the grasses and tops of fallen logs.

Yellow-pine Chipmunk

Yellow-pine Chipmunk?

I think that this is a Yellow-pine Chipmunk (Tamias amoenus), I photographed it as it ate a seed head perched on a rustic fence in Lakeview. Chipmunks have been a favorite of mine since I was a small child and to this day they still fascinate me.

These are just three mammal species that delight me when I have visited Red Rock Lakes NWR. It would be wonderful to see the Wolves, Grizzlies and Mountain Lions that are in the area too.

Mia

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