The Blue Ridge Mountains, famous for its cove and slope forests filled with biologically diverse flora and fauna, also contains the beginning of the Rappahannock River which stretches 195 miles east to the Bay. 
 A Bobcat within a fog filled forest in Shenandoah National Park.  One of the most exciting, and thrilling, moments I've encountered while documenting the watershed was the morning I spent with this Bobcat.  Most people are not aware that Bobcats may live in their area, as they are very elusive and wary of humans.  While not one of the largest wild cats the Bobcat is very adaptable and very powerful predator, capable of hunting adult deer.  
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 A newborn Whitetail Deer and mother.  After being born mothers lick their fawns to remove their scent and avoid predators such as Black Bear, Coyote, and Bobcat.  They instinctively will curl up and hide within the grass when left alone.  
 Wave clouds over the mountains.
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 A Balsam Fir stands in front of a snow covered mountain.  This conifer is more common in eastern and central Canada as well as the Northeastern United States.  However it is found in pockets in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed on high peaks of the Appalachian Mountains of Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Virgina.  The Fir needs a cool climate and abundant moisture. 
 In 2014, research from the University of Maryland's Center for Environmental Science showed that water quality had improved in rivers that feed into the bay from the Appalachian Mountains, including the Blue Ridge, due to the Acid Rain Program of the Clean Air Act.  This law led to a 32% reduction in nitrogen-oxide from coal-fired power-plants.  The improved water quality was not something originally anticipated.   
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 This Eastern Towee was singing heavily on an early spring morning after the rains had subsided.  However a Peregrine Falcon flew overhead causing the bird to crouch and become silent.  Peregrine Falcons have been reintroduced to much of their former range, including the Blue Ridge Mountains, after populations were decimated by the use of the pesticide DDT.  I did not attempt to photograph the falcon as this bird's reaction to its presence was far more interesting to eyewitness.
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 Moonset over the Big Meadows of Shenandoah National Park.  The meadow features the largest concentration of rare plants within the park and is like no other meadow in the world due to certain plants being endemic only within Shenadoah's borders.
 A species of the tropics, the white morph of the Great Blue Heron, is found within Southern Florida and the Caribbean.  However, for 7 months this lone male made the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western Maryland its home from early summer to mid winter a few years ago.  He did not take to the local blue herons very kindly as he would normally displace them if they came too close to his new-found territory.  As was the case with this image.   
 Waterfalls abound here in the mountains, flowing from creeks and streams into the rivers that lead to the Bay. 
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