Two weeks ago we visited the Sulphur Creek Nature Center, which is a small wildlife rehabilitation center that’s a very short drive away from our house. I’ve wanted to go here for years but for one reason or another never got around to going until now. What a great place! Lots of wildlife to see and educational opportunities for children, too. If I had more time, I’d love to volunteer here on a regular basis.

Here are my favorite shots of the afternoon.

This fox was difficult to photograph– it was very shy and was hesitant to leave its den in my presence. It spent a great deal of time peaking at me from the shadows, and if I so much as sniffed it returned back to its home in the blink of an eye, kicking up a trail of dust in the process.

Meeting this little red fox was the highlight of this trip for me. I wasn’t expecting to see one as they’re not indigenous to this area. Typically, the permanent residents at Sulphur Creek are wild animals rescued locally who are kept in captivity indefinitely due to physical disabilities.

This little guy seemed very healthy and plenty curious.

Peekaboo!

There was a coyote, too, but this was the only (blurry) shot I got of it before it scampered off to go take a nap in its den.

We had the pleasure of watching this half-blind hawk eat a meal. Warning: A little grotesque… But fun for the whole family! ๐Ÿ˜‰

This trip was a lesson in manual focusing. Since all of these animals were behind chained link fences (sometimes more than one), I couldn’t rely on automatic focusing since that would always bring the fence into focus. So I had to focus by hand, which was challenging because wild animals sit still and cooperate for no one. Some of these photos are better than others, but at least I learned something new. ๐Ÿ™‚

A prairie falcon.

A beautiful golden eagle.

A raven.

A brewer’s blackbird.

Some kind of passerine.

A mourning dove.

A bunny! :)

I didn’t get a good shot of it, but there was also a turkey on site that was rather cute but a little aggressive. Turkeys make the cutest little chirps– to call them “gobbles” is a gross misrepresentation of their calls. Who comes up with onomatopoeias, anyway?

There’s a small visitor center that has a lot of terrariums that are homes to various amphibians, reptiles, and insects, like this king snake.

And its “friend”:

Sulphur Creek is a great family outing for folks in the East Bay. Lots for the little ones to learn, it’s free, and they’re doing great work here. Highly recommended. ๐Ÿ™‚

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