BWCA Rare Wildlife encounters..... Boundary Waters Listening Point - General Discussion
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joshawes
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03/21/2013 03:13PM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
Has anyone ever seen a Lynx, mountain lion, fisher or any other rare animals while paddling the BWCA?
 
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Lepus
member (8)member
 
03/21/2013 03:25PM  
pine marten tried getting in our food pack on a quetico trip. don't think pine marten are rare, but it was fun to see it...and it sounded much much bigger!
 
03/21/2013 03:28PM  
Nothing rare, but we also had an encounter with a pine marten. It killed a rabbit right in our camp. Fun to see!
 
dicecupmaker
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03/21/2013 03:35PM  
Pine marten came into camp on the last night of my solo. I swore I was going to be torn from lim to lim. At that moment, listening to it run around camp in the dark, I was alive and aware of my surroundings.
 
03/21/2013 03:44PM  
Cougar on Brule.
 
joshawes
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03/21/2013 03:44PM  
LOL!!!^^^ A Pine Martne would be awesome to see. I personally wnat to see an otter. I've seen them before but unofortunatley I left my camera back at camp. :(
 
bottomtothetap
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03/21/2013 03:45PM  
On Ashigan once, we had paddled across the lake to a flat rock near shore to clean our fish. Suddenly a mink came out of the bushes eyeballing our fillets. When I saw those little needle-like teeth, I became very aware of my bare toes! The more we scared it off, the pestier it got, returning again and again until we left the gut-pile for it to feast on before the gulls came. When we got back to camp our buddies said they had heard us yelling at this darn thing but were worried that we were actually confronting the bear we had chased away from our site the previous day!
 
Savage Voyageur
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03/21/2013 03:46PM  
Pine Martin on Seagull lake. Heard a big cat but did not see it on Cherokee lake.
 
joshawes
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03/21/2013 03:46PM  
You really seen a cougar??? Thats aawesome! I suppose you only got a quick glimpse and he was gone into the forest???
 
eagle93
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03/21/2013 03:54PM  
fisher on Cherokee, twice
30 feet from a wolf, trail near Ely in October
Martin, several times, last time was Alder
Bobcat, my backyard
 
inspector13
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03/21/2013 04:18PM  

Do moose count? : ) I’ve seen a lynx on the shoulder of Lake County Highway 2 and a Fisher at my cabin. Otherwise I haven’t even seen a bear or wolf while paddling; only otters, beavers, and other common species.

 
joshawes
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03/21/2013 04:31PM  
Sounds awesome! I hope my next trip turns out to be similar! Awesome story! Never seen a mink...
 
DayDreamin
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03/21/2013 04:38PM  
it wasn't in MN, but I had a Bobcat run in front of me at the Pinnacles National Park campground a couple weeks ago. Was also circled by 3 California Condors the same day!
 
03/21/2013 05:19PM  

Add me to the Pine Marten viewing list. Spotted one on the "Man Chain" several years ago. Other than that, I've seen the other usual suspects, with the exception of anything in the cat family, at least in "Quetico-Superior".

Hans Solo
 
03/21/2013 05:31PM  
quote joshawes: "You really seen a cougar??? Thats aawesome! I suppose you only got a quick glimpse and he was gone into the forest???"

Saw him (or her) walking along the shoreline just under the browse line of the trees. Watched it for about 45 seconds before it cut into the woods. It was right at twilight. Couldn't make out a tail, but deduced it was a cougar based on its size (big), color, and most of all, the way it walked. Thought it may have been a wolf when I first spotted it, but as I watched it was clearly feline in its gait.
 
bellolake
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03/21/2013 05:44PM  
I had an adventure on the Kek trail with a bull moose as he was charging from about 30 yards away. Pretty exciting for a while!
 
OBX2Kayak
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03/21/2013 06:31PM  
Not in the BWCA, but I briefly spotted a gray wolf while hiking a snowmobile trail a few miles east of Superior last summer. Beautiful animal ... a lot more fur than the ones on display at the Wolf Center.
 
JackpineJim
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03/21/2013 07:00PM  
While driving to BWCA, nearly ran over a cougar that ran across the road in front of our van north of Ashland, WI. Missed it by about 10 feet. They do move FAST and have really long tails. It was a skinny cat but from tip of nose to tip of tail seemed longer than the width of the van.
 
kyleyewongster
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03/21/2013 07:01PM  
Can anyone identify this critter?
 
03/21/2013 07:10PM  
quote kyleyewongster: "Can anyone identify this critter?
"
Penguin?
 
bruceye
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03/21/2013 07:33PM  
Wolves a few times. Bob cat from my tree stand during gun and bow. One put on a pretty good show when it got a hold the roll of line I use to raise and lower my bow up and down the tree. Looked like a big kitty cat playing with a ball of yarn, when she was done, (I know it was a female because she was scent marking too) it was wrapped around every bush and tree in the area. Saw a black panther once maybe twice in the same area. Driving my tractor down a fire lane one day, I came across a fisher in a jaw trap. I took off my Carharts, put them over him and went to work. He was wrapped up pretty good in the tie wire but I got him free with out getting my face tore off. In fact, I was surprised at how docile he was through the whole process. All most like he knew I was there to help.

Heres some close ups I think are pretty cool;

 
jcavenagh
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03/21/2013 07:44PM  
Never while in the canoe...only seen bear and wolves from the car on the way up.
 
TeamTuna06
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03/21/2013 07:56PM  
Saw a fisher last year on the shore in the bay just west of American Point. Pretty cool.
 
marsonite
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03/21/2013 08:01PM  
quote kyleyewongster: "Can anyone identify this critter?
"


That's a mink.
 
bruceye
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03/21/2013 08:27PM  
quote marsonite: "quote kyleyewongster: "Can anyone identify this critter?
"



That's a mink. "


Yep!
 
letsgoagain
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03/21/2013 08:48PM  
quote bruceye: "quote marsonite: "quote kyleyewongster: "Can anyone identify this critter?
"




That's a mink. "



Yep!"


Agreed!
 
strom2127
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03/21/2013 09:23PM  
On last years trip we saw a bear on the drive to the EP, both a pine martin and otters on Hustler, a beaver and the biggest great horned owl I've ever seen on Lynx.
 
Chlorin8ed
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03/21/2013 09:31PM  
Pine Martin last fall, Con Island, Some kind of snake (maybe 7-8 inches long) Lower Pauness, Mink, same trip
 
Zulu
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03/21/2013 10:50PM  
I wasn't paddling but a Mountain Lion strolled across the road in front of the truck I was driving 1/2 mile south of the Mudro Lake entry point in August of 2009.

Two Pine Martens chasing a rabbit galloped through the campsite on Horse Lake in August of 2011.

While canoeing an Otter swam by with an egg in it's mouth.
 
slipbobber
member (35)member
 
03/22/2013 04:48AM  
I had my hammock set up about 50 foot or so from the group in the tents. Every night when I walked up the path there was 2 little eye reflections but never seen what it was. After reading this post and looking up a picture it might of been a Pine Martin. About the right size from what I remember.
 
03/22/2013 06:22AM  
I've seen a fisher on two different occasions
a bobcat running across the Gunflint Trail
 
03/22/2013 07:34AM  
Not in BWCA, but in Woodland Caribou Provincial Park (WCPP) I saw this Woodland Caribou in 2012 while on Solo on Haggart Lake.

Video One of Woodland Caribou

Video 2 Woodland Caribou

Sorry for the poor quality, but was on the water and hard to get a good shot while trying to paddle with one hand and video and take picture with other hand. :)

SunCatcher
 
03/22/2013 07:38AM  
A couple years ago on a trip with my kids, for 3 evenings in a row at the same time, a big rabbit would run through camp shortly followed by a fisher.

Never did see it but my dad and uncle, while canoeing back from fishing, said the watched a wolf walk close to the shoreline toward our camp and within about 50 feet of camp (where I was at the time) darted off into the woods. Really makes you wonder what you don't see around you.
 
oldgentleman
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03/22/2013 07:42AM  
I saw a fisher on Agnes once.
I had a bobcat walk through the yard at my fishing shack on the Au Sable in Michigan.
I've seen a lot of mink, otter and beaver while trout fishing in northern Michigan as well as in the BWCA.



My most memorable wildlife sighting in the BW wasn't any really unusual animals, but it was a fascinating procedure. I watched and photographed a garter snake swallow a toad over the course of an hour and a quarter. Watch the slide show.

Snake and Toad
 
03/22/2013 08:02AM  
A buddy of mine watched a wolf tear apart a beaver lodge for almost an hour on one trip off the Gunflint Trail.
 
TuscaroraBorealis
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03/22/2013 08:13AM  
 
gorytt
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03/22/2013 09:11AM  
On our first BWCA trip we saw a wolf swimming across Lake One from one island to the next. On our second trip we watched a bear across the cove from our camp. Same bear ended up in camp later that afternoon. Had to scare him away.
 
CrookedPaddler1
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03/22/2013 09:18AM  
I have been pretty fortunate to spend a large part of every summer since 1986 in the BWCA / Quetico. I have seen a number of pretty cool things. The cougar on Canadian Agnes probably tops this list! But the coolest thing, was probably two bald eagles that dive bombed the canoe from the upper atmoshpere. At first we could only hear them, then we could see two dots coming down. The shot right toward the canoe and opened their wings about 10' above the canoe. AWESOME is all I can say!
 
Freddy
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03/22/2013 09:35AM  
Not rare, but we did see wolves in three separate areas on our last trip!
 
bottomtothetap
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03/22/2013 11:12AM  
Thought of another odd one:

Camped on Spoon Lake, near Bonnie and Knife, Mommy and the little martins casually walked through our camp within about five feet of us humans. An adult and two or three young passed through between us and our fire as we were just sitting around yakking. Though they may have smelled it in our pack, we did not have any food out so I'm not sure if that's what drew them in. The adult looked right at us and they did not seem to be hurried or bothered by humans at all. I could almost hear the adult saying, "Don't mind us, just passing through. Taking the family out for a stroll!" They did not hang around and were gone as quickly as they appeared. It was actually pretty comical and before anyone said anything, we all just looked at each other and laughed!
 
03/22/2013 11:38AM  
Just remembered another one.

While not rare wildlife, I got some pretty cool video of a turtle (painted I think) digging a hole to lay eggs in, not 3 feet from the back of our firegrate (this was on Polly).
She must have gone well into the night because she was still digging when we went to bed. Couldn't even tell she was there the next morning.
 
03/22/2013 11:39AM  
i was paddling solo against the wind on pike lake, hugging the shoreline to take advantage of the bit of relief it offered from the wind. the shoreline is steep here. i noticed movement in the woods, i stopped paddling for a moment to get a better look, suddenly a beaver jumps from the woods, he must have been about five feet above the lake, he does this belly flop dive and misses my canoe by a couple of feet. a flying beaver is a sight not to be forgotten.
 
ozarkpaddler
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03/22/2013 12:10PM  
quote bottomtothetap: "Thought of another odd one:
Camped on Spoon Lake, near Bonnie and Knife, Mommy and the little martins casually walked through our camp within about five feet of us humans. An adult and two or three young passed through between us and our fire as we were just sitting around yakking. Though they may have smelled it in our pack, we did not have any food out so I'm not sure if that's what drew them in. The adult looked right at us and they did not seem to be hurried or bothered by humans at all. I could almost hear the adult saying, "Don't mind us, just passing through. Taking the family out for a stroll!" They did not hang around and were gone as quickly as they appeared. It was actually pretty comical and before anyone said anything, we all just looked at each other and laughed! "


Now, THAT is really neat! We've seen Pine Martens twice in the BWCAW and the one time it sounded like a cross between a grizzly and a wolverine; it sounded like it was going to eat us up.
 
emptynest56
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03/22/2013 01:23PM  
After landing the canoe at our site on South Arm Knife. My daughter walked up the hill to edge of high grass and came face to face(10 feet) with the tufts and whiskers of a lynx, probably looking for grass-grazing snowshoe hares. Had a fisher walk all over behind our camp in Crooked(we saw it while fishing from canoe). All the abundant red squirrels previously there disappeared after that.
 
realandrea
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03/22/2013 03:49PM  
At Lake 2 we found a beaver lodge built under some boulders at the water's edge. We could actually see the platform inside with two beavers just hanging out in it, not more than two feet from our faces. We also saw a wolf not 50' from the ep, just standing there in the middle of the day checking us out. Last summer on Knife two mink ran full bore towards my dad and brother who were sitting by the fire grate. Their fearlessness made me shout out a warning but they were just checking us out as well.

No bears yet, nor Mr. Lynx. And if a cougar shows up well then, I'm ok with that. :)
 
03/22/2013 05:21PM  
I have seen otters on a few occasions. Fun to watch them play. Moose, beaver, mink, and eagles. Although not rare; always a treat! I saw an Orca whale once, but not in the BWCA.
 
bonzm
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03/22/2013 06:06PM  
Witnessed a fight between a loon and an eagle on Seagull Lake. Was coming up to a bay area and stopped paddling just at the entry and could hear squawking galore. Not sure who got the top hand (wing) as the loon dove and the eagle started swimming to shore. Had my camera near but the video was of poor quality but really doesn't matter, I know I witnessed something truly awesome.
 
1lookout
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03/23/2013 06:00AM  
A carrier pigeon on Rose Lake. Not wild, but bizarre!
Seems someone in G.M. housed them.
 
DayDreamin
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03/23/2013 09:29AM  
Had a wolf run across the road in front of me yesterday. I pulled over and watched him in a field for a bit. Beautiful animals.
Was about 10 miles west of millacs
 
emptynest56
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03/23/2013 10:55AM  
I asked the park naturalist at Kathio State Park about 5 years ago whether there were any wolves sighted in the park(10,000 acres). He said not yet, but they would probably be there soon. Also told us that that area of MN is a small area where white and red-breasted nuthatches share territory and indeed, there were both at the park bird feeder just outside the window.
 
BRic
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03/23/2013 11:46AM  
Last year my brother and I were fishing in two separate canoes along shore, sight fishing bass between Thursday & Friday bay. Our canoes were just touching the shore and enjoying the shade of some overhanging branches. Well we must have ruined the opportunity for fish that one particular eagle was waiting for. It turns he was sitting on a perch about six feet above us of which we were totally oblivious to. All of a sudden we heard this -whoomp, whoomp, whoomp- and could feel a burst of breeze coming down on our shoulders in time with the -whoomp, whoomp, whoomp- It had been the eagle's wings flapping for take off just above us and we got to see him fly away just over our heads.
That was pretty cool.
 
bottomtothetap
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03/23/2013 12:13PM  
yes,BRic that IS pretty cool!
 
bussmonkey
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03/24/2013 11:59AM  
Not is the BWCA but a once in a lifetime...

I was on Obabika west of Tamagami in Ontario two years ago and heard an awful "screaming" noise across the bay. Went to investigate and it had stopped. I was about 15'from shore for about twenty minutes and could hear hear a soft, low purring sort of noise. Finally I spotted a Lynx in the very top of a tree just off shore.

Coolest thing I have ever seen until... I noticed that the Lynx paid no attention to me what so ever and seemed pissed off. This is when I saw the Cougar at the base of the tree!!!

Damn - BIG KITTY! Watched for a while when the cougar shot up the tree and attacked the Lynx, this was the noise I was hearing . I started to shoot video with my camera, the point in the video when my camera goes down is when the cougar shot down the tree and I started to back paddle. I was defienetly close enough for her to jump into my boat. When she got down she gave me ""stink eye" for a minute and then slowly walked into the woods (twoard the general direction of my tent) the Lynx stayed put and I slowy paddled away. I would say that the Lynx "won"this battle as it was still alive at the end of the day. THis was the most awe inspiring and powerful things I have ever seen and will never forget.

I have some pics of the lynx but no good shots of the cougar. the video shows the tree top shaking violently and the sound is awesome.

Fished the next bay over just shaking over what I had witnessed and peered into the woods at what I thought may be the fleeing cougar - nope... It was a Wolf. Lynx, Cougar, Wolf all in about an hour. Have never seen ANY of these species prior to this. Nor since.

I reported the sighting to the Ontario wildlife folks and they told me the estimated population of Cougar in
ontario was around 800. And I got to see one!!

Needless to say, sleeping that night did not come easy. I slept with a Pot and my Hatchet thinking about a big dog and two huge kittys roaming the woods. And to think, I was worried about bears and moose (neither of which I saw on this trip).

All these pics are on my work computer and will try to post this week.
 
03/24/2013 09:52PM  
quote letsgoagain: "quote bruceye: "quote marsonite: "quote kyleyewongster: "Can anyone identify this critter?
"




That's a mink. "




Yep!"



Agreed!"


Looks like he went a little heavy on the Hair Gel that morning :)
 
03/24/2013 11:25PM  
Wow, bussmonkey, that is really neat. I would love to see those pictures.
 
The Lorax
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03/25/2013 06:57AM  
A lynx on the road after a backpacking trip on the way home. He calmly walked right in front of the car. We got a good long look at him.
 
bussmonkey
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03/25/2013 09:46AM  

http://youtu.be/bTjqOhFC24A


Video of Lynx Vs. Cougar on Obabika Lake Ontario.

Video Sucks but the audio is cool. So this is what I heard that drew me into this bay... freaky noise.

End of video when camera is down you can hear limbs breaking. This is when Cougar came crashing down tree and I was too close for comfort. Back paddling ensued.


 
bussmonkey
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03/25/2013 10:00AM  
 
03/25/2013 11:06AM  
quote jwartman59: "i was paddling solo against the wind on pike lake, hugging the shoreline to take advantage of the bit of relief it offered from the wind. the shoreline is steep here. i noticed movement in the woods, i stopped paddling for a moment to get a better look, suddenly a beaver jumps from the woods, he must have been about five feet above the lake, he does this belly flop dive and misses my canoe by a couple of feet. a flying beaver is a sight not to be forgotten."



Had that happen on Pocket Creek in 2010. Bernice almost instinctively jumped in after it (one of her first trips) but caught herself. Your right, you'll never forget that sight.
 
BRic
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03/25/2013 03:32PM  
quote bussmonkey: "
http://youtu.be/bTjqOhFC24A
Video of Lynx Vs. Cougar on Obabika Lake Ontario.
Video Sucks but the audio is cool. So this is what I heard that drew me into this bay... freaky noise.
End of video when camera is down you can hear limbs breaking. This is when Cougar came crashing down tree and I was too close for comfort. Back paddling ensued.
"

That is a serious fight for one's life. Intense.
 
BRic
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03/25/2013 03:32PM  
quote bussmonkey: "
http://youtu.be/bTjqOhFC24A
Video of Lynx Vs. Cougar on Obabika Lake Ontario.
Video Sucks but the audio is cool. So this is what I heard that drew me into this bay... freaky noise.
End of video when camera is down you can hear limbs breaking. This is when Cougar came crashing down tree and I was too close for comfort. Back paddling ensued.
"

That is a serious fight for one's life. Intense.
 
Newbster
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03/25/2013 03:56PM  
How old was she ?
 
03/25/2013 05:00PM  
I posted this before, but it's pretty neat. We had two of these come in as we were packing out.









 
XvXBrAnDoNXvX
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03/28/2013 02:10PM  
I seen a deer once...
 
joshawes
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03/28/2013 02:44PM  
That is insane Bussmonkey!!! Awesome story thanks for the input!
 
03/28/2013 02:45PM  


crap early digital photo of a loon walking up the rocks at curtain falls. you have to squint.
 
joshawes
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03/28/2013 02:50PM  
Bussmonakey I cant find this video??? can you repost the link???
 
hobbydog
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03/28/2013 04:14PM  
I ran into some strange wildlife on a portage along the Bird River last year.

 
mr.barley
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03/28/2013 04:46PM  
I got attacked by a hissing grouse going across the Curtain Falls portage. I had a canoe on my shoulders and a pack on my back, so I was defenseless.
 
Mocha
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03/29/2013 10:54AM  
was lucky to get a glimpse of a moose yesterday!

 
03/29/2013 11:10AM  
wolves 4 different incidents, Moose maybe 10 incidents, fisher only once.
 
mr.barley
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03/29/2013 11:22AM  
Several years ago, my brother and I were canoeing across a bay on LLC toward a cow moose we saw standing on the shoreline. She watched us coming, but for some reason didn't walk off into the woods. As we got closer (about 50 feet) we noticed a wobbly calf walk out from behind a large boulder on the shore. I sank my paddle into the water a found we were only in about 2 and a half or 3 feet of water. Not a good depth to be at if the cow got mad. She snorted and ran off into the woods only to come back within a minute. We then decided we should maybe get out of there so as not to further stress out the cow....and possibly for our own good. It was pretty cool.
 
ppine
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03/29/2013 11:39AM  
One trip in the BWCA we saw bears, eagles, and moose.
Recently in other places: a wolf in NE Nevada, hit a bobcat with my truck near home, a mountain lion near Portola, CA, wolverine in SE Alaska.
 
JackpineJim
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03/30/2013 10:09PM  
Saw a Loon sitting on its nest and a Seagull sitting on its nest not 4 feet apart on a rock in the middle of Suzanette Lake. One was facing east and one facing west. Each seemed to be trying to ignore the other's presence.
 
elhemmil
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04/11/2013 07:53PM  
Not in the BWCA, but I saw two fishers chasing each other in the woods at my folks' place south of Cloquet some years back, and last summer while fly fishing a small stream near Marquette, MI I saw a wolf cross about 50 feet upstream of me. That was neat.
 
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