Slim Jim’s Bigger Picture, by Walkaboutlou

Hello Janet,

I recently mentioned the old nearly blind former pack leader, Slim Jim, and him joining his daughter over 8 miles away from his core area.

The move mystified me because I felt he had it all. Safety in landscape and Bison herds. 

The bigger picture with wild animals is almost really never known. We cannot know every detail, trajectories or reasons. However..I realize more now about Slim Jim with help from others and some analytical thinking. (And it’s still guesswork)

Slim Jim had a very nice area and kept following bison for some months. However. . .2 things changed the Bison scene:

1) The Bison cows are heavily pregnant or giving birth. Their tolerating ANY canine..including elderly Slim, is over with motherhood. At least when calves are tiny 1st couple weeks.

2)The bison are a captive herd. They may have 7,000 acres to range. But they are moved periodically. Early calving season the bison are moved out of hills to watch until all calves are born and birthing season is over. Slim Jim wasn’t about to follow Bison in hemmed in fences. 

Why he didn’t stay in the area when buffalo left is likely a few wolves passed thru. Rolling in bison patties apparently is a wolf pleasure when herds aren’t about. Trotting wolves even distant would likely unsettle the old guy. 

We will never know how Slim Jim made it to Daughter Kinky and her family. Did she fetch him? Did he somehow know where she went and begged admittance? 8 miles is alot when you are blind and not fast. He made it. 

He is now officially pup sitter of 3 pups.Kinky had a tiny litter. (Her being a yearling might be partial reason) 

He is with pups constantly. He likely sees a little and stays very close to the massive cliffs and crevices that are now home. 

He went from green foothills and range to stony highlands. 

I wish his scruffy little body well.



4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Bobbie Pyron
    May 07, 2022 @ 00:41:41

    This is fascinating! May we all have a family member like Kinky to take us in and allow us to feel useful when we’re old and slow.


  2. MelindaH
    May 07, 2022 @ 01:08:17

    Lou always tells stories about the critters that make me want to meet them.


  3. Cindie
    May 07, 2022 @ 03:41:24

    Thank you for this AMAZING story…I’m deeply touched and moved to tears. THANK YOU!!!!


  4. Gina
    May 07, 2022 @ 19:37:11

    Thank you for these updates. I can never get enough of this story! However, I’m now worried both about the wolves and about the people who are out hunting and trapping the other coyote packs in the area, and I hope Kinky Tail and Slim Jim and their family stay safe!


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