Following Pronghorn: LAPC & WWP

I’ve been following pronghorn for years. They have much to teach us.

following pronghorn near Great Basin Npk

A restless past

In the distant past, I was always restless, bounding from place to place, relationship to relationship. Once I started sensing my roots taking hold, I would break free, fleeing restraints. I sprinted towards the next place or person. Like an animal being pursued by a predator, I found it easier to run.

Grazing pronghorn buck in Yellowstone

Following Pronghorn

One day I started thinking of pronghorns, those iconic creatures of the Wild West, differently. Maybe I could learn something from them. They are a one-of-a-kind animal, not quite fitting into any family. I felt that way too and I began following pronghorn.

Following pronghorn at Steens Mtn

If pronghorns encounter obstacles, they cannot leap over them, they must find a way under or around them. I honed my skills at getting out of difficult situations. Finding the path is not always easy.

Large pronghorn buck at Yellowstone

Pronghorn’s excellent vision and enormous eyes give them a 320-degree field of vision. I broadened my views and opened my eyes to observe more of the world around me.

Pronghorn herd at Malheur NWR

In parts of their range, pronghorn migrate seasonally, while in other locations, they stay year-round. I migrated from the rain forest to the High Desert where I found a comfortable life. It’s the right habitat for me throughout the year.

Marking pronghorn buck in Yellowstone May 2017

Pronghorns are cautious yet curious. They have come within inches of me, close enough to inhale the scent of their musky perfume. It’s difficult to let your guard down, but it’s okay to let curiosity guide you once in a while.

A herd near Hart Mountain

Though capable of traveling at amazing speeds, pronghorn spend much of their time grazing. I’m not fleet of foot, but I found the pace that works best for me. Fast is not always better.

Lone doe at Yellowstone

In winter, pronghorn live in large herds. At other times of the year, they travel in small groups or alone. Large groups are fine at certain times, but it’s okay to find comfort alone or with just a few.

Rooted in place

Pronghorn settled into High Desert environments best suited for them to survive. They are rooted in the West.

A herd at Hart Mountain

Other restless wanderers blow by me, like tumbleweeds tossed by the wind. I allow my roots to grow through sandy soil and anchor themselves under boulders, dense and volcanic. This is home.

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18 thoughts on “Following Pronghorn: LAPC & WWP

  1. What an excellent read Siobhan – it totally fits the LAC theme of ‘getting to know you’ while also teaching us a lot about these elegant animals 🙂

  2. Thanks for joining the challenge and for sharing these awesome creatures with us! I fell in love with pronghorn, too, on road trips to National Parks in the West. They are truly and uniquely of the US and so elegant to see in motion. I also find that Nature has so many valuable lessons to teach us when we observe with an open mind and heart. Great post!

    • Thanks! Yes, I was really close to one of those pronghorn. I kept backing away slowly and he kept following me. He was very curious.

  3. Your post brings home the point that we have a lot to learn from animals. I love that you have an affinity for the pronghorn and were open to learning from it. I haven’t seen them up close until now. I appreciate your love of them and your wonderful photos!

  4. Your post took me back to a moment in time, the ES.Library and a dialogue about your time at the Pronghorn preserve down in Oregon. I believe you really did relate to the animals as you considered your future. Thanks for sharing.

    • You’re welcome! That conversation took place so long ago, but yes, I learned to appreciate High Desert critters.

  5. Pingback: Some of my best photos from 2021: LAPC, SS - bend branches

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