|Click the photos to see my handsome sleeping face!|
I was driving down the main road through our subdivision around noon today when cars suddenly came to a stop, and lots of pedestrians were gathering. A sheriff's deputy was there, and I figured there had been a mild fender bender that attracted rubberneckers. The crowd was still there when I came back about 40 minutes later, and this time I looked in the direction of the gawkers. This black bear was napping on a tree branch, not 15 feet off the ground and right along a busy 4 lane residential boulevard, in someone's side yard.
I of course had to join the gawkers with my camera. These were NOT taken with a big, fancy telephoto lens. He was that low in the tree, and that close to the paparazzi.
He stayed in the tree, napping, from noon until sometime between 6 and 6:30, as far as I can tell. He was still up there when I passed by on my way to dinner at 6, but my daughter reports he was gone when they drove by at 6:30.
Florida wildlife is very used to people. Sophie met a friendly raccoon on an early morning walk the other day - it kept its distance but was completely unafraid of the dogs, and climbed a tree to watch them from a fork that was only a couple of feet above my head - obviously, it had figured out that dogs are lacking in climbing skills, and trusted me not to bother him. We have coyotes on the golf course, and of course possums and armadillos and the occasional fox. It always amuses me because we are not in any way what you'd describe as "country" - no heavily wooded lots, the houses are close together, etc. Yet, this dude found himself a place to nap, to the delight of his human neighbors.
It also serves as a reminder to me, that I need to be alert and aware of my surroundings when walking the dogs in the dark. But it really is pretty cool.