Nature Never Disappoints
Exploring a dry creek bed, came upon an area rich in nectar-producing plants.
|And where there's nectar, there's pollinator insects.|
|Native bees like this one, access nectar by boring into the base of
trumpet-shaped flowers like this Sticky Monkeyflower blossom.
|There are also predator insects that await the unwary.|
|This damselfly is also predator. She's got a tiny fly in her mouth.|
|Beautiful example of a Bernardino Dotted Blue butterfly.
Note its size when compared to the tiny Buckwheat blossom.
|Pair of Dotted Blue's getting acquainted.|
|Whither she goest, he will follow.|
|A female Great Copper busily nectar-sipping.|
|But love was in the air for a male Common Buckeye.|
|She fluttered her wings to drive him away. After all, she was having lunch.|
|Eventually, he got the message and flew off to a "separate table".|
|A Common Buckeye and a Great Copper are unsuitable for pairing.|
|But this male Great Copper is a perfect match.|
|Picking my way through this area.|
|I startled a tiny pocket mouse.|
|It took off at high speed.|
|Just as well as there was a 4-foot Kingsnake foraging in the same area.|
|Lots of CA Buckwheat in various stages of bloom.|
|Likewise for White Sage.|
|Female Great Copper on White Sage.|
|Painted Lady spreads her wings to bask in the morning sun.
(Note the "beauty mark" next to her right eye spot.)
|This Northern White Skipper was content basking on the ground.|
|The extent of the day's wanderings.|
|To some, scrub land like this looks dull, uninteresting.|
|To others, it has a beauty all its own.|
|3 May 2020|
|Dry creek bed east of Hwy 25.|
|Good habitat for a variety of wildlife, including the Western Road Runner.|
|Keen predators, their diet includes lizards, snakes, small rodents, fledgling birds.|
|Extremely wary, they'll flee at the sight of humans.|
|They have been clocked at 15-20 miles an hour.|
|Tobacco Tree saplings line the creek bed. Introduced from
South America in the 1700s, all parts of the tree are toxic.
|However, insects and hummingbirds draw nectar from its flowers with no ill effects.|
|So out of place in such a harsh environment, our native Sticky Monkeyflower.|
|Another valuable nectar provider for insects.|
|California Buckwheat provides essential nectar for insects when other sources die back.|
|Common to this area, a Bernardino Dotted Blue.|
|Hmmm, is this sandstone rock concave? (Nope... It wasn't... Bummer!)|
|However, during another visit, I found a stone pestle among creek bed rocks.
It's planed on two sides and fits a grip perfectly.
|Interesting pattern in a dry side channel.|
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