Pesky Parasitoids, Part 3
1 day ago
|View from the house towards Wassem's Peak in the Tucson Mountains. |
A storm came through last night and we woke up to a cloudy sky and snow cover starting just above out own level of 2400 feet. Our rain gauge showed 4 tenth of an inch, more than we've had so far this year.
A little higher up on Kinney Rd in Saguaro National Park West to wards the ASDM one side of all Saguaros was outlined in white. Already dropping off in big chunks.
View towards the western mountains. This storm blew in from the San Diego direction.
View through Contzen Pass in the Tucson Mountains at the Catalina Mts where the snow cover seems to reach all the way down to Orovalley.
We'll head out into the western and north-western dune areas (AZ and CA) tomorrow to collect insects. This weather system was cold, but it also delivered the moisture that many dune species need to break their diapause, so it may be interesting.
|My favorite Woopecker|
|Acorn smithy holes|
|The characteristic brown back|
|'Madera Canyon Birds' watercolor of my first Trogon encounter in 1994|
|Blue-winged Teal Pair|
|Male Blue-winged Teal|
|Most common is the small Green-Winged Teal|
A Flock of Least Sandpipers occupies the sandbank
Spotted Sandpipers with rhythmically dipping tails search for food along the banks. I was thrilled to watch a Wilson's Snipe around the pillars of the bridge but I couldn't get a photo.A Water Pipit was more obligingNoisy Killdeer feed at muddy parts of the river bank, but they can also be found in the dry, stony sand flats along the road where they will hide their eggs. Today I saw a Coyote and a Northern Harrier patrol the water's edge for prey, last week it was a Prairie Falcon - It may be safer to keep vulnerable offspring a little bit away from the attractive riparian area.
Last year the river changed its bed and covered most of the open mudflats that the Black-necked Stilts liked. This year I've seen them at Sweetwater but not at the Ina Bridge where these photos were taken in 2007.
I really miss those elegant beauties.
At dusk, the Green Heron finally moves out of his hidden spot by the river bank
© Margarethe Brummermann and Arizona: Beetles, Bugs, Birds and more (ABBB), 2009/2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margarethe Brummermann and ‘ABBB', with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.