Wyoming is now overrun with oil drilling rigs and the water tastes bad (and in many cases is bad) because of fracking.  But money is to be had and "to hell with the earth" is the trumpite motto, well and alive in Wyoming.

The Birds of the United States and Canada video portfolio includes several species from Wyoming, including Barrow’s Goldeneye, Mountain Bluebird, and American Robin.  Birding the West Vol. 1 and Vol. 2  videos (see the North America portal page on this website for a listing of species) contains material from Wyoming.  For photographs, see  Wyoming, a photo gallery which contains photographs from various locales in the state including; Yellowstone National Park, Devil’s Tower National Monument, and Fossil Butte National Monument.

Videos of mammal species recorded in Wyoming include; American Buffalo (video1, video2, video 3) and Pronghorn.

I have been to Wyoming many times, sometimes I travel through Yellowstone - but try to avoid the place during the summer when it is just a mob of tourists.  The following video was recorded on one such trip, narrative for Wyoming follows the video.

Mountain Plover

Roughly 15 years ago, Jon and I took a summer trip through the western United States.  Our target bird while in Wyoming was the Mountain Plover (video).  We were, of course, taking whatever opportunity we had to tape other species.

We had been searching for wild horse herds and had stopped at a restaurant/gas station at a T-intersection of two red dirt roads.  It was dusty and hot and it was the only building we had seen for a long time.

We wandered in and ordered some sandwiches, there were a few locals there at that time of day and a couple of them came and went.  Everyone was living up to the cowboy stereotype, pick-ups and horse trailers, cowboy hats and boots, talk of steers and horses.  Everything was comfortable in my head and food was on the way.

Then some cowboy screws with the stereotype by asking his friend if he would come over and check his home network, seems that the computer protocols have slipped a cog and need some adjustment and good ‘ole quality and assurance'.

To quote an old cliche - life is funny.  Now I live in a small town in the foothills of the Black Range in southwestern New Mexico.  My friends include lots of cowboys who drive pick-ups and haul horse trailers around, they raise cattle and horses.  My friends also include linguists, pathologists, doctors, dentists, lawyers, wildlife researchers, writers, artists, historians, craftsmen who specialized in restoration of historic homes, and others of that ilk.  

When the tourists come to town they think we are quaint and wax nostalgic about the past.  We embrace the stereotype the tourists bring with them, it is part of our persona.  But like those cowboys in Wyoming there is more to the persona than the stereotype.

Back in the 1990’s when I was working on the “Birding The West” series I was able to photograph and videotape the White-tailed Prairie Dog - in Wyoming.  While gathering material for my update of that series last month I was able to do the same for the Black-tailed Prairie Dog - also in Wyoming (June 22, 2007).

Prairie Dog, Black-tailed
 Cynomys ludovicianus
Wyoming, USA

This sometimes happens, I miss a bird or mammal at a location but manage to tape its related species - sometimes it is years before I am able to complete “the set”.  Sometimes, there are multiple opportunities - as with the American Buffalo.

© RABarnes 2023-2024