Our housesitter called when we were away to say that we hadn’t told her about our unexpected friend. At dusk she had walked out onto the back patio and discovered a 5-foot gopher snake slithering along the house. Knowing our respect for critters, she successfully whisked it away with a broom. We hope it stays around. After all, gopher snakes eat lots of rats and other rodents, which also seem to like our yard. [Read more…]
First a full disclosure: I have had both indoor cat and outdoor cats.
Yesterday I came across a half-eaten bird kill caused by a cat I’ve seen stalking our bird-friendly property. It made me think of some research The Secret Life of Roaming Cats I heard on NPR in August. Working with the National Geographic Society, University of Georgia researchers strapped small video cameras on 55 cats as they roamed [Read more…]
We recently stayed at a timeshare (Hacienda del Mar) in Cabo with friends — and discovered a bountiful nature scene following the heavy rains that hit the area the last few weeks. The answer: in addition to the rich marine life among the rocks, go find the native plants, which we found next door to the resort, nestled around the golf course. The photos below tell the story about what I’ll remember most:
- thousands of butterflies [Read more…]
Vultures taking advantage of the hundreds of sphinx moth caterpillars crossing the road, Colorado River toads, noisy grasshoppers and gorgeous sunsets….
I took a trip to Arizona last week, and happened to time it with the last days of Arizona’s monsoons. When I lived in Flagstaff I relished the annual monsoons, those afternoon showers that hit every July though September. [Read more…]
This is from a friend of mine, Denise Morse, a fellow defender of the environment. We served together on a land trust board in Alpine CA. She writes about Madera Canyon in the Santa Rita Mountain Sky Island – a wildlife haven outside Tucson that is facing a new copper mine
by Denise Morse
I parked facing west looking at a heavily vegetated tall mountain region that was crowned by ominous storm clouds. I pushed back my seat and rolled down the windows and began to listen for nature. It wasn’t long before I heard a woodpecker tapping diligently on what looked like an Arizona White Oak. [Read more…]
We were up at a Big Bear concert a couple weekends ago, which was sponsored by the San Bernardino National Forest Association (great time – one more concert Sep 1st), and director Sarah Miggins told us they removed a rattlesnake during the concert that was coiled up under the sound stage. Oblivious to the hundreds of attendees, a U.S. Forest Service biologist successfully captured the snake, placed in a garbage can, and released it some distance away.
It was likely glad to get away from all the noise. And thank goodness, as one security person was about to use a fire extinguisher on the snake. [Read more…]