A Beautiful Place

I was busy tidying up the back porch when Daisy arrived early one morning last week. Seeing her, I threw my broom aside and dashed to the feed bins on the porch to put a few scoops of feed and a deer attractant we call “fruity kibbles” in a bucket. Then, I quickly dashed inside to put long pants on, and donned my muck boots since the woodland bottom is a mucky mess from recent rains. Lastly, I grabbed an old windbreaker on my way out the door to keep the mosquitoes from biting me. I had seen Daisy at the feeder a couple of times the last few days, but she was always on high alert and did not stay long. I knew she had babies hidden somewhere close by and she would not be far from them for very long. I felt she had her fawns hidden out north of our place, but I had not been able to follow her, as she usually took off running whenever I tried to follow.

But this morning was different. Daisy took her time at the feeder and mineral stone. She nibbled on the fruity kibbles, then went to the water tub for a long drink. Next she mosied over to the clover patch and spent a lot of time nipping off clover heads. She kept alert all of this time, looking off to the north with her ears up straight. Sometimes, she would stop eating and just listen and watch, but eventually she went back to grazing. I noted her udder was quite full, so I knew that meant she would be heading back to feed her babies soon.

Daisy Deer_0951 Daisy Deer_0960

After satisfying her appetite and a quick lick on the mineral stone, Daisy makes her way to the pecan orchard.
After satisfying her appetite and a quick lick on the mineral stone, Daisy makes her way to the pecan orchard.

After her quick feeding session, Daisy took a final lick on the mineral stone and sauntered towards the pecan orchard. She stepped through the middle of the barbed wire fence, which was unusual. Generally she opted to go under the bottom wire of the fence. She munched on weeds along the way, and I tried to follow quietly, but human feet are, unfortunately not designed for quietness. I trailed behind her, making snapping noises as I crunched twigs under my feet, and creating sucking sounds from my boots in the areas where it was quite muddy. A couple of times Daisy looked back as if to say, “Can you possibly make more noise?” Finally, she stopped and ducked under a fence. There was plenty of room for me to get under the fence too, but it was muddy and cattle had trod in it. Cow patties seemed to be everywhere. I looked to see if there was another place to roll under the fence but I didn’t see any better spot. This was the driest, muddy section there was! Rats! And, not waiting on me, Daisy slowly walked on sniffing and taking a bite of poison ivy as she headed east. I needed to get under the fence before she got too far away! Finally I found a couple of pieces of wood to lay under the barbed wire, and bearing most of my upper body weight on them in a push-up sort of pose, I crossed under the fence without getting too muddy.

Exhausted from the push-up maneuver, my heart was hammering. I wondered how, with all of the work I do on our place, a simple movement like that could get the best of me? I took several deep breaths before proceeding to catch up with Daisy, who was still dawdling around, nibbling browse. I finally caught up with her and, as she walked ahead of me, I stood in awe of the scene. Next to an embankment was a stream of clear water. Ahead were hundreds of trumpet vine flowers scattered about, having fallen from the vine. Just a few rays of sunlight pierced through the tree canopy above. The temperature was cool here and there weren’t any insects – most notably, no mosquitoes! Daisy stopped to take a long drink and then continued to walk back to the south a bit, and slowly meandered up the embankment. As I followed Daisy, I realized she had chosen the easiest route to take to the top. I could see she had walked this path before, as numerous hoof prints marked a trail all the way to the top. Daisy looked back at me just as she reached the top, and I wondered what she was thinking of me at that moment. My rubber boots were actually some of FD’s old boots, and they were just a tad big on me, so trying to climb the muddy embankment was a real challenge. When I finally reached the top, Daisy seemed quite relaxed, nibbling weeds without a care in the world. We were now on a vacant property just north of our place which was not kept up. Though within city limits, this area was zoned agricultural, but the individual who owned it did not have a use for it. As a consequence, the weeds were tall – I would guess some were more than six feet tall. Still, there were meadow flowers in some of the shorter grasses, and trees with very low-hanging branches. If I were a kid, this would be a wonderland full of fantasy potential. Even as an adult, I could see myself curled up, sitting with my back against a tree trunk, while reading a good book in the shade and perfectly hidden from everyone. All of a sudden, the noise of a mower running on the next property had my attention and Daisy on full alert. In seconds, she made a couple of leaps and disappeared into the tall weeds. I lost sight of her and wondered now if she had her babies in the tree line just north of me, or perhaps in the neighboring property somewhere. Once again, she’d given me the slip, and I could not help but wonder that if the mower had not interrupted us, she might have shown me where her babies were hidden.

Daisy takes a path through the water. I wonder if this is to mask her scent?
Daisy takes a path through the water. I wonder if this is to mask her scent?
Daisy waits for me to catch up.
Daisy waits for me to catch up.
Fallen trumpet vine blossoms floating in mirrored waters.
Fallen trumpet vine blossoms floating in mirrored waters.
A shake of the tail and we're on our way!
A shake of the tail and we’re on our way!
At this point I needed to up the pace to catch up with Daisy. Can you find her in the photo?
At this point I needed to up the pace to catch up with Daisy. Can you find her in the photo?
Daisy enjoying a nibble of tree leaves.
Daisy enjoying a nibble of tree leaves at the top of the embankment.
Tall grasses and overgrown trees make for good hiding places for fawns!
Tall grasses and overgrown trees make for good hiding places for fawns! These unkempt acres are perfect for Daisy to raise her babies.
This photo does not appropriately show the downhill hike I had to make with my too big mud boots on!
This photo does not appropriately show the downhill hike I had to make with my too-big mud boots on! Heading home seemed much more difficult than the climb up top!
Crystal Clear Water
Returning home through the Crystal Clear Water area.
Getting close to the open area of the pecan orchard.
Getting close to the fence of the pecan orchard.
I am not sure why there was a hanger where I followed Daisy under the fence, but I left it as a marker in case I return.
I am not sure why there was a hanger where I followed Daisy under the fence, but I left it as a marker in case I return.

I followed the trail of Daisy’s hoof prints back down the embankment and through the wooded area and stopped to take a few photos of the beautiful trumpet flowers in the clear water. I marveled at the cool air and tranquility of this place – an area, in the past, I had only looked into from the other side of the fence, declaring it was too dark and thick with vegetation to venture into. I am sure I had visions of snakes and insects to completely talk myself out of entering. But it was a beautiful place, and I completely understood why Daisy had come here. This area offered quiet and lots of thick cover for her fawns. It offered water, plants, and browse for Daisy to eat. And it was not really all that far from Daisy’s home, where she could spoil herself with a little feed, fruity kibble treats, and several plots of sweet clover.

Trumpet Vine Blossom
Trumpet Vine Blossom
The beautiful Pecan Orchard.
The beautiful Pecan Orchard.

© 2016 Day by Day the Farm Girl Way…


28 thoughts on “A Beautiful Place

  1. Drats she foiled you again. Get some boots that fit you if you don’t have any already. And keep all of what you need for quick grabbing. I bet in a few days you’ll have spied the fawns. The photos are just great. I laughed about the roll under the fence. On the farm I crawled through many barber wire fences. You also need a small tarp to put on the ground or, not. 🙂

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    1. Yvonne, I am used to laundering red dirt and muck from my clothes. Many is the time I follow Daisy around or I’m photographing wildlife crawling around on the ground! I crawl around weeding the gardens too. I usually try to keep the ground in dirt to a minimum though! I find the easiest route through difficulty too. This particular fence is tight and the rows of barbed wire are close together but the bottom wire allowed plenty of space to get through. Oh, how I wish for those long, slender legs of Daisy’s to shimmy through the woods and under fences. Better yet, I could jump or leap over obstacles! 😀

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    1. Henri, you would have loved the little stream of water. My phone camera did not do justice really. The most beautiful thing about it was that it was created by nature… and Daisy was so beautiful walking through the stream.

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  2. Beautiful post, Sister! I was so hoping Daisy would lead you to her babies, but the scenery she led you to was breathtakingly beautiful, and likely not too far from where she keeps them. Love the pics! I could totally see you curled up in that tall grass somewhere (like you said), far away from all distractions, reading a good book!

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    1. Thank you, Jules. I think your Emily would have loved the spot. And Sid would have enjoyed finding his way up the embankment. It was such a lovely area I know I’ll be visiting again soon, if I can escape my responsibilities here for a while!

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  3. You are intrepid, Lori! It does sound like a perfect haven for Daisy and her fawns. I sure hope they survive this time. thank you so much for sharing your adventure!

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  4. Your adventure reminds me of the kind of adventure I had weekly as a girl growing up on a mountain in Tennessee. Nature, woods, views, rocks and hills for climbing, clean rolling streams…we were out in it all the time, whenever we wanted to be. I can’t imagine still having access to it now. The fact that you do makes me so happy. Just following nature and your nose. It’s so beautiful.

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    1. Well said, Charlotte! I did not have the beauty of woodlands, mountains and streams growing up in rural Nebraska but we managed to find all sorts of interesting spots to roam in the fields and on country roads. Even the farm buildings were fun to poke around inside and find times of quiet and comfort. My favorite memories are of the outdoors, running a muck with my siblings. Daisy so often takes me back to that lovely place in my mind.

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  5. What a joy it must have been after all that rushing to change into different clothes to have her take her time. That hanger is a mystery. So interesting how little things like that can spark all kinds of “I wonder what that’s about” thinking. Wonderful photos. ❤

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    1. Thank you, Paulette. I continually notice odd things and wonder how an item ended up where it did. I find all sorts of things on my walks to the river. I imagine some of these “treasures” float along when the river is up, or perhaps someone’s trash blew around, but the hanger just hanging there was certainly strange.

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  6. I love how Daisy came to fetch you. She kept waiting for you to catch up and was just about to introduce you to her babies when the threat of danger took over. I am sure she will come and fetch you again when the threat is over. The moment a grandma gets to meet the new babies is priceless. We have those trumpet flowers here. Here they are exotic introduced species 🙂

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    1. Trumpet vine grows wild here and is not a sought after plant! In fact it’s so invasive that it’s about impossible to kill out. I have one plant that I purposefully planted a couple of years ago. It grows up a tree, offering more cover for the birds and squirrels. I love it, but it doesn’t grow well in our woodlands like it does other places. Perhaps we have poorer soil than just north of here. It sure was a beautiful sight in that waterway. It looked like a woodland wedding was about to take place! 🙂

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      1. Well it goes to show that what is a weed in some places, is a desirable exotic in others ;). My sister has that trumpet vine at her house. My mum tried to send me a seed pod from it once to have a go at growing it but I couldn’t get it to grow.

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        1. I haven’t tried the seed pod. Mine was purchased at the end of summer at a discount. It’s taken three years to really get established. I hope mine doesn’t get out of control like they tend to in the country. Most country folk try to kill them out!

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    1. Thank you, Audrey. I imagine that Daisy will bring her babies in this area sometime soon. I really hate to go back to that area of the woods since I might be pestering her, and I hate to be that nosey gramma that can’t stay away!! ha ha! Usually, after the first month, when the fawns have stamina and can run, the does bring them out. I did scare up a fawn by accident yesterday. I was taking some weeds to the burn pile area and a fawn hiding on the nearby knoll jumped up and fled. So another doe has her baby(ies) very near our house.

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        1. I agree with you! And, around here there are so many photographers that touch up their work so I never know if it’s real or not. I have no time or desire to add, edit or touch up anything. What you see is what you get… but I tell you, that area was perfect for Daisy! 🙂

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  7. Wow I too can see why Daisy chose there to keep her fawns…so serene and lush! I love how she leads you and waits for you, I believe you are right if that mower hadn’t started up she would have brought you to see her babies. One of these days…but now you know just how lovely and inviting it is beyond and not dark and fearful of a place at all! 🙂

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