|Photo by Ned Harris 7/7/2013|
|Photo by Ned Harris 7/7/2013|
And Gila two
Ned saw two Gila Monsters on lucky 7/7/13!
|Photo by Matt Ball 7/26/2013|
Matt and I saw this one on 7/26. Matt also made this video.
|Photo by Mark Hengesbaugh 7/26/2013|
As we reached the parking lot coming from the Bear Bridge trail this morning (Friday, 7/26/2013) we found this albino Round-tailed Ground Squirrel in the parking lot. We think it's a true albino because it had pink eyes. Unfortunately my camera is in the shop so I had to take the photo with my iPhone.
|Photo by Ned Harris 7/18/2013|
This is a first for me, two Gila Monsters fighting. I witnessed it this morning (7/14) at 6:00 a.m. near Sabino Dam.
It's Gila Monster breeding season and the males roam around at night, looking for love. When a male encounters another male they may fight. It's a fairly ritualized combat with each male trying to flip the other over onto its back. The winner gets the girl, if one's nearby. There is occasionally some biting and a little blood may be drawn, but serious injuries aren't common. These two apparently had been at it for a while when I came upon them because they appeared to be exhausted. They were pushing and shoving but none too vigorously. They broke off their combat about 15 minutes after I first saw them and it didn't appear to me that either one of them had prevailed. Notice, however, that one has sustained an apparently minor bite on his snout. I didn't see any ladies but one may have been near by.
|Photo by Steven Kessel 7/5/2013|
A female Broad-billed Hummingbird, caught in the act of gathering spiderwebs. They use spiderwebs for nest construction, so perhaps she's thinking of raising a family. I made this photo less than 100 yards from the Visitors' Center.
|Photo by Ned Harris 7/1/2013|
|Photos by Ned Harris 7/7/2013|
|Photos by Mary Zalokar 7/5/2013|
Your directions worked great!! Also, Steven Kessel whom I met today on the trail took the time to bring me up-to-date on our very vocal fledglings.
|Photo by Mark Hengesbaugh 7/4/2013|
Yesterday at the dam (7/4/13), we saw the 4 Cooper's hawk fledglings hanging out on one snag all begging raucously. Then we found mom sitting like a duck in a cool pool of water below the dam studiously ignoring her offspring and taking a well-deserved break.
Does the dam seem to have fewer song birds at the moment? In "What the Robin Knows," by Jon Young (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2012), Young says his research shows that each hawk nestling requires sixty-six songbirds to eat during the six-week period they are on the nest. That's 264 small birds for the four chicks, a serious dent in any creek's small bird population.
|Photo by Steve Kessel 6/30/2013|
|Photo by Ned Harris 6/19/2013|
|Photo by Ned Harris 6/29/2013|
The young ones are rambunctious, flying from tree to tree, incessantly calling for their parents and devouring whatever the parents bring. Meanwhile, Mom and Dad have the appearance of being worked very hard. All of the birds in these images are fledglings.
|Don't eat the feet!|
|Leggo my leg-o|
|All Photos by Steve Kessel 6/28/2013|
The runt from the Cooper's Hawk nest fledged today (Saturday 6/29/2013) so all 4 of the youngsters are flying around near the nest tree. Here are a few of the images, more are on flickr.
|All photos by Ned Harris 6/29/2013|
|This one is the 'runt'|