Photographer Pamela Underhill Karaz lives on a rural property in Trenton Falls, New York. She gets some pretty amazing wildlife shots due to the 48 acres of forest and field surrounding her. But this moment could take the title of the best of them all so far.
“We’ve had coyotes living around us for years. We hear them mostly during the summer evenings,” she told MNN. But this was different.
“Our driveway is a quarter-mile long and lined with 45-year-old balsam trees. Being a photographer, I’m always on the lookout for wildlife activity. I spotted the coyote while having our morning coffee. He was one-third of the way down our driveway. He went to the middle, looked across then decided to come back up a bit.”
“He left his scent on a downed branch (that’s how I know it was a male), then went into the trees and popped out up at the edge of our yard. Looked around, checked out and sniffed some tracks in our yard and when he was further along he noticed the toy. He made his way over to it, sniffed around it where our dog had rolled, sniffed the toy, picked it up, dropped it, sniffed it again.”
And then the magical moment happened. “[He] picked it up then proceeded to toss it up in the air and play with it, just like a dog would toss a toy around. It lasted perhaps five to 10 minutes, from picking up the toy, tossing it in the air, picking it up again and almost bucking around with it … then he just casually trotted off with it.”
She pointed out that her dogs often leave their toys in the yard and some have disappeared before. This probably isn’t the first time the coyote has done this.
“This was such a wonderful reminder that all animals, the wild and the not so wild (our pets) are really not so different,” Pamela says.
“They have personalities, they have feelings, and they do their best to survive in what is sometimes a very unfriendly world. They are not so very different than us.”
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