Let me tell you a story…

I hope you’re sitting comfortably, as this a little bit different to my usual posts… There are several ‘points’ to this story, as you will see at the end, though I’ll be as brief as I can. 😊

It’s been snowing off and on for the past week or so. The garden was completely clear of the white stuff before it came. So just when we thought Spring was on its way, we were back to square one.

But when the sun comes out, everything looks beautiful…

Though it does mean some work is necessary if you want to go anywhere and not be up to your knees in it all the time. Note: It’s around 60 to 70 metres/yards to get to the parking area (which makes for good training! 💪)

Consequently, some of the bird feeders came out again and we had a visitor on the balcony, sheltering from the snow… an Alpine Accentor. (It was a friendly little thing – even allowing me to open the window to get this uncropped shot from about 2m / 6 feet away).

But this also meant we had some other, bigger visitors…

So I decided to put up the Trail cam again and two nights ago, amongst several others, it captured this video:

And then again last night, this one (of around 10 clips) at 10:45pm. Regular readers may note that it’s the same stag (with 3 prongs and 2 prongs) as my previous posts in December and January.

Then, around 2:45am, the trail cam captured another series, including this one nearer to the camera…

Hopefully you’ve viewed the last video, to see the ‘point’ of this story… (or lack of them). If not, shame on you, go back and watch!

The stag must have shed its antlers sometime between 10:45pm last night and 2:45am today. And below is what we found this morning… How kind of him, after using those antlers to destroy our bird feeders over the past 3 months to leave them behind for us as a souvenir! They each weigh 1.4kg (just over 3 lbs) and measure 70 cm (or 2ft 3.5″) in length.

Also, who knew that the ‘bottom end’ of the antler is called the corona or burr and the area on the stag’s head where it attaches (or detaches in this case) is called the pedicle? You learn something new every day! 😊

18 thoughts on “Let me tell you a story…

    • Yes, it’s the least it could have done after all the damage it did to all the feeders! The bird is an Alpine Accentor. (I’ve just realised that the ‘title’ or name of the pic isn’t visible on single images, like it is on the galleries – so I may have to edit the post…)

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  1. When I realized he had shed his antlers, I hoped he left them there for you. So then when I got to the end of your story, a huge smile emerged on my face. Excellent story and suspenseful, too. What a prize you and your wife received. Very interesting seeing the close-ups of the antlers, too. Thanks for this Alps adventure, and great photos, Mike, much enjoyed.

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    • Yes, it was very nice of it to leave them nearby, rather than deep in the (steep) woods. We already had one antler which we found in Scotland a few years ago. It sits above the door into the lounge/dining room. These two are much bigger so they may have to be put onto the wall outside, under the terrace. Only question is, how to ‘fit’ them up, so that they look good and don’t fall off! (I don’t want to damage them by e.g. drilling holes through them).

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  2. What a beautiful, cold world you live in – I am not sure that I would cope with all that snow [it does not snow where I live]. I have often wondered what happens when antlers are shed and here you provide photographic proof – and have the antlers to boot! What an interesting encounter!

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    • Yes, it is beautiful, for a while anyway, but after 2-3 months you do get a little fed up of it. Thankfully the second ‘wave’, which fell a few weeks ago now is melting rapidly, so Spring is definitely on the way. We were surprised to find the antlers so close to the chalet and together. I assumed they’d get knocked off as they went through the woods. I guess once one is gone, their heads must feel lop-sided and they must quickly get rid of the other. Our worlds are certainly very different!

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