Sunday, April 18, 2010

Casey's Stories: Yellowstone

So I watched the great BBC documentary about Yellowstone National Park the other day. I'll admit that I wasn't a huge fan of Yellowstone when we visited. It was huge, and we spent tons of time driving, and even though we were there in September it was still terribly crowded. The terrain reminded me of where I grew up, so I wasn't overly-impressed with it. All in all, I would say it was one of my least favorite national parks.

Well it's much better in HD on Netflix Watch Instantly!

This documentary was great, focusing on the difficulties most animals experience in trying to survive Yellowstone's cold, cold winters. The cinematography was truly stunning, too. The park looked way better than I remember.

Of course there were rodents to be found all over this three-part series! This little guy, the pine squirrel, had a short story arc concerning his attempts to store pine nuts for the winter despite the fact that the bears keep coming and digging up his nut stash and taking it for themselves. Poor little guy. You could see the frustration in his beady little eyes as he watched the bears break into his cupboard.

The movie also had a short bit on the pika, a noble North American creature who lives at high altitudes and spends the summer gathering and drying grass for its winter stores.

Now, I love rodents, and am always excited to learn about a new rodent to love. So imagine my suprise when Wikipedia informed me that the pika is actually part of the Lagomorpha order (rabbits are in this order)! Not Rodentia! "But... but... he's so cute," I thought to myself. "He can't possible be related to the rabbits. How could this guy NOT be a rodent?!?" But who am I to question the work of scientists? (Note: In my next life I intend to be a rodent biologist.)

The moral of this story is that not everything I love is a rodent (and in fact, it turns out that B is not a rodent either), but it's okay to love animals that are from other orders. But only a little.


  1. The google ads on your site keep offering me ways to get rid of squirrels!

  2. I know! Isn't it terrible? I need to figure out a way to tell them that this is a pro-squirrel space.

  3. Casey. This was made for you. Made. For. You.