Critters, From Montana to California

I've never second-guessed why as children we learned that cows say "moo" and ducks say "quack." After having actually seen these animals in real life and heard them make such noises with my own ears, I have always trusted with blind faith that all the other animal sounds I learned were accurate as well.

Imagine my delight when I was finally able to confirm that wild turkeys do in fact say "gobble gobble," though it's much more guttural and about five times more gobbling. This discovery occurred in none other than the wide open spaces of western Montana, U.S.A. It just so happens that my turkey friends were crossing the road when we spotted them. I just couldn't resist rolling down the car window and snapping a few shots of them.

My wildlife adventure didn't stop there. Also in Montana, I got to see mountain sheep (the animals below with the light coat and small horns, no rams in this group), elk (the animals with the darker coat), whitetail deer (not pictured), and mating bald eagles (definitely not pictured -- too quick for me). I even saw real cowboys herding cattle across the highway - if that's not real wildlife, I don't know what is!

Although our trip didn't extend from sea to shining sea, it did reach from border to border. After some time in Montana, we made our way down to San Diego, California. Some of the creatures we encountered there were hermit crabs (the one below acting very hermit-like hiding in his shell), some sea bird (I'm no ornithologist, so I only wish I could tell you exactly what he is), and a dolphin (not pictured -- again, too quick for me).

Who says you need to go to a zoo to see wild animals? (Though, I suppose once animals are in a zoo it's not very accurate to refer to them as "wild.")

As you can see, America offers natural habitat wildlife adventures aplenty, but I still find great joy in visiting my hometown zoo: The World Famous San Diego Zoo. Stay tuned for a post on my recent visit and my impression of the new elephant enclosure.

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