Other Critters

This is one of the prettiest. thumbnail
What might they be saying? thumbnail
Some day, I should write speech bubbles for this group. thumbnail
We like the Swiss cows with their fluffy ears. thumbnail
They have the cutest squirrels.  thumbnail
Spotted Nutchrackers near lake Davos thumbnail
Along the way we ran into another slug. thumbnail
A marmot watching the cows. thumbnail
The marmot again.  So cute. thumbnail
Another view of a marmot thumbnail
OK, marmots are cute and I had never seen one before. thumbnail
Here's the slug. thumbnail
On the way down, we almost stepped on this little mouse. thumbnail
A Catwalk thumbnail
A goatwalk thumbnail
Chamois thumbnail
A chamois, viewed from our balcony in Austria thumbnail
A moose and elk made from straw and wood, I think.   thumbnail
Adorable....sheep not goats....I think thumbnail
One of the local snails thumbnail
Hiking down to Telfs: snail thumbnail
Frogs and rainy weather thumbnail
A lizard caught in mid-shed thumbnail
More goats. thumbnail

This is one of the prettiest.

Photo by Peter.

What might they be saying?

Photo by Peter.

Some day, I should write speech bubbles for this group.

Photo by Peter.

We like the Swiss cows with their fluffy ears.

Photo by Peter.

They have the cutest squirrels.

Photo by Cathy

They move too quickly. I especially like their pointy, ear-tufts. Cute! For some good photos, see wiki link.

Spotted Nutchrackers near lake Davos

Photo by Cathy

Along the way we ran into another slug.

Photo by Cathy

A marmot watching the cows.

Photo by Cathy

The marmot again. So cute.

Photo by Cathy

Another view of a marmot

Photo by Cathy

OK, marmots are cute and I had never seen one before.

Photo by Cathy

Here's the slug.

Photo by Peter.

On the way down, we almost stepped on this little mouse.

Photo by Peter.

He just held still and seemed unaware of us. I wonder if he was sick, injured or what...clearly adorable though. Looking into this a little bit here at home, he might have been a pet as he looks like a Kangaroo mouse from the SW US.

A Catwalk

Photo by Cathy

A goatwalk

Photo by Peter

Chamois

Photo by Justin (I think. Found it on my camera.)

The critter "chamois" and "chamois" that can be used to polish things are traditionally related according to Wikipedia. (link)

Chamois leather, traditionally made from the hide of the chamois, is very smooth and absorbent and is favoured in cleaning, buffing, and polishing because it produces no scratching. Modern chamois leather may be made from chamois hides, but hides of deer or domestic goats or sheep are commonly used, and cotton flannel can be used as a fake-chamois fabric, with similar qualities.

A chamois, viewed from our balcony in Austria

Photo by Justin (I think. Found it on my camera.)

We had seen chamois a few times from our apartment balcony. I was happy to see the pictures. Here is more about chamois (link).

A moose and elk made from straw and wood, I think.

Photo by Cathy

We saw lots of these on this trip. This pair was near our front door.

Adorable....sheep not goats....I think

Photo by Cathy

So, I had to wonder and research this. A lot of you know that these are sheep, but I was not sure. Here are some interesting differences. (this was taken from Sheep101.info, see also Differencebetween.net)

Taxonomy - While sheep and goats have many similarities, their taxonomy (scientific clasification) eventually diverges. Each is a distinct species and genus. Sheep (Ovis aries) have 54 chromosomes, while goats (Capra aegagrus hircus) have 60. While sheep and goats will occasionally mate, fertile sheep-goat hybrids are rare. Hybrids made in the laboratory are called chimeras.

Look at their tails - The easiest way to tell the difference between a sheep and goat is to look at their tails. A goat's tail goes up (unless it is sick, frightened, or in distress). Sheep tails hang down and are often docked (shortened) for health and sanitary reasons.

Foraging behavior - A big difference between sheep and goats is their foraging behavior and diet selection. Goats are natural browsers, preferring to eat leaves, twigs, vines, and shrubs. They are very agile and will stand on their hind legs to reach vegetation. Goats like to eat the tops of plants. Sheep are grazers, preferring to eat short, tender grasses and clover. Their dietary preference is forbs (broadleaf weeds) and they like to graze close to the soil surface. Goats require a more nutritious diet.

Behavior - Sheep and goats tend to behave differently. Goats are naturally curious and independent, while sheep tend to be more distant and aloof. Sheep have a stronger flocking instinct and become very agitated if they are separated from the rest of the flock. It is easier to keep sheep inside a fence than goats.

Goats will seek shelter more readily than sheep. Neither species likes to get its feet wet and both prefer upland grazing to lowland. In a fight, a ram will back up and charge to butt heads. A goat will rear up on his hind legs and come down forceably to butt heads. During controntation, such fighting behavior favors the ram.

Physical differences - Sheep and goats have numerous physical differences. Most goats have hair coats that do not require shearing or combing. Most sheep grow woolly coats that need to be sheared at least annually. Lamb tails are usually docked (shortened) whereas goat tails are not.

Sheep have an upper lip that is divided by a distinct philtrum (groove). The goat does not. Male goats have glands beneath their tail. Sheep have face or tear glands beneath their eyes and foot or scent glands between the toes. Male goats develop a distinct odor as they grow in sexual maturity. The odor is very strong during the rut (mating season). Sexually mature rams have much less of an odor, if they have an odor at all.

Horns - Most goats are naturally horned. Some goats have beards. Many breeds of sheep are naturally hornless (polled). Some sheep have manes. Goat horns are more narrow, upright, and less curved than sheep horns. Sheep tend to curl their horns in loops on the sides of their heads.

One of the local snails

Photo by Peter

Hiking down to Telfs: snail

Frogs and rainy weather

Photo by Cathy

A lizard caught in mid-shed

Photo by Spencer

More goats.

Photo by Cathy

This is one of the prettiest.
What might they be saying?
Some day, I should write speech bubbles for this group.
We like the Swiss cows with their fluffy ears.
They have the cutest squirrels.
Spotted Nutchrackers near lake Davos
Along the way we ran into another slug.
A marmot watching the cows.
The marmot again.  So cute.
Another view of a marmot
OK, marmots are cute and I had never seen one before.
Here's the slug.
On the way down, we almost stepped on this little mouse.
A Catwalk
A goatwalk
Chamois
A chamois, viewed from our balcony in Austria
A moose and elk made from straw and wood, I think.
Adorable....sheep not goats....I think
One of the local snails
Hiking down to Telfs: snail
Frogs and rainy weather
A lizard caught in mid-shed
More goats.

Other Critters (not insects ;-))

You know we love insects, but we also like other critters as well.