Friday, October 31, 2014

Today's walk report: 103114, Halloween Special

Happy Halloween, everybody!

This was yesterday's walk around the southbound neighborhood. Just pictures, have fun!

Casper the Bird Turd Ghost.

A little disturbing.

Again, disturbing.

Thanks for the hand.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Today's walk report: 103014, last weekend

Almost all these "reports" are titled with a date. That date used to be the walk that day and these happened almost everyday. Of late that's simply too hard to do and, for the most part, I think it compromised the blog. Besides, I have somebody else in my life now and my time with her supersedes all other. The last 9 months of my life have been happier and much more full-filling than any other epoch in my life. So there's that. Anyway, since most picture taking is on walks during weekends I'm trying to at least post the "last weekend" before the next one occurs. Here's what was captured last weekend, 102514 and 102614. Friday, 102414 was a picture day too but nothing made the grade. While I constantly struggle in the photo editing department, lately I've been considerably more picky about things.

Saturday, 102514...

Upon entering the garden, Docken and I heard the oddest sounding "cries" from this crow. It was a cooing sound almost like a mourning dove but more guttural.

Apparently it was waiting for this character, who entered with little concern but seemed very proud of its polystyrene souffle cup find.

At least it kept him quiet. I'm only making him a male because of his arrogance by the way. I don't really know.

I ambled away from this. There wasn't very much enthusiasm on my part and Docken and I both questioned whether we may have been fighting some sort of "bug." I only went far enough into the garden so I could sit down in the shade and catch my bearings. I got up for what sounded like a very noisy, very slow moving airplane, only to discover it was an ultralight. I have not seen one of these since the late 70s or perhaps the early 80s. Maybe because, according to Wikipedia, "restrictions include flying only during daylight hours and over unpopulated areas." Oops, this was not one of those areas.

Everything else was too blah to display.

Sunday, 102614...

Mexican bush sage. I don't believe I've every seen it white/pink before, it's usually purple.

A bee on some sage.
A grasshopper on Salvia uliginosa.
A katydid on Lantana.
The sight that made the day. Docken and I marveled at two pairs of red-tailed hawks "dancing" in tandem. Beautiful to watch but a p.i.t.a. to photograph. Nevertheless, you get the idea. These shots were both pair #1, pair #2 was a little too distant for a decent photo.

And this is what the day looked like, not too shabby. Are we finally moving into something we can really call fall? Is the expectation of rain this Saturday a false hope? Stay tuned...

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Today's walk report: 101514, last weekend

Busy with other "stuff," last weekend's walks and picture taking took a back seat but here's what I've got...

Saturday, 101114.

Blue-eyed Darner (Aeshna multicolor, syn. Rhionaeschna multicolor).
A wild rose.
Vanessa cardui aka, Painted Lady, or the Cosmopolitan.
Vanessa cardui on lantana.

Another Blue-eyed Darner.

Sunday, 101214.

A small tribute to the southwestern fence lizard. Things are finally cooling down in SoCal and that'll mean goodbye to the lizards for awhile.

Some species of Banksia, plant family Proteaceae.

Common Buckeye butterfly, Junonia coenia. With its wings closed at 1.5 meters amongst the wood chips and dirt the butterfly seemed to disappear every time I pulled the camera away. This butterfly REALLY blends in well.

The red-eared slider turtles, like the lizards, will disappear soon too. Red-eared sliders brumate over the winter at the bottom of ponds or shallow lakes; they become inactive, generally, in October, when temperatures fall below 10 °C (50 °F).

So ends our tail, er, tale this week... Stay tuned for more and thanks for coming along on our walk.