Ya Yellow Livered Schweinhunt

Had enough of the birds yet?  I figured so!  Well, you are in luck.  Thanks to having all the Yellowstone shots processed, I have plenty of non-bird topics to throw at you.  I’ll still need to toss in our feathered friends from time to time, but today I can bring you this ….

Yellow-Bellied Marmot shot in Yellowstone National Park in May 2013

Take your best guess… A Beaver? a Hedgehog? maybe a gym rat Squirrel on steroids?  A Squirrel is actually pretty close seeing as how this creature is a member of that family.  It is actually a member of the Marmota genus commonly referred to as the Yellow-Bellied Marmot.

Yellow-Bellied Marmot shot in Yellowstone National Park in May 2013

hit the jump to read more about our Marmot encounters!

Continue reading Ya Yellow Livered Schweinhunt

We’re Here for You Marmots – Rocky Mountain National Park

What does the Puss ‘n  Boots and the tiny rock creatures in Galaxy Quest have in common?  The answer is they frighten me.  No, I know they are not clowns, but they have the ability to be charming and cute while they are scheming to kill you.  Puss ‘N Boots would take off his hat, expand the eyes to capture his victim off guard and the pounces on them with saber in hand.  Those cute looking rock creatures are all smurf like until one shows a weakness and they pounce on it and tear it to shreds with their fangs and claws.  Why am I bothering to tell you this?  The reason is I encountered a new creature on visit to the Rocky Mountain National Park that creeps me out in a similar manner.   Here it is in stealth mode:

Yellow-Bellied Marmot

Did you find it?  Here is a hint:

Yellow-Bellied Marmot

According to my National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Rocky Mountain States, this devious creature is a Marmot.  In my opinion he looks like a groundhog or possibly a beaver with a furry tale instead of the paddle.  Apparently, it is a member of the squirrel family which puts it in the Yosemite Sam Varmint category.  There is an error in this guide as it states that the Marmot’s habitat is below 11,000 feet.  This picture was taken at 12,000 feet on the Tundra trail.

Upon first look, it is all soft and cuddly like.  He would probably curl up in your lap and softly chirp (straight from the guide) away.

Yellow-Bellied Marmot

But there is definitely a demon side to this creature.  Take the jump to see a couple more pictures of the Marmot

Continue reading We’re Here for You Marmots – Rocky Mountain National Park