Friday, March 13, 2015

Gila Monster Day at Sabino Canyon



We don't need guides to take us around the canyon anymore.  We can stumble about all by ourselves and still find something to look at that intrigues, excites us, or more likely stumps us.


We started off the day with a good looking Triangle Leaf Bursage.  No problems there.


After some looking in our books this seems to be Dogweed, but there are a hell of a lot of yellow flowers out there.


 
For instance this may be Desert Senna or it may be some other DYF (damn yellow flower.)

 
 
There are a lot of whites too and it doesn't help if two flowers literally on the same Chickory plant sit side by side and don't look any more alike than a Doberman and a Spaniel.


 
Sometimes identification does get easy though.  This here nasty fellow is a Graythorn Bush and you do not want to tangle with it.



 Another one we are getting pretty good at is Mustard Evening Primrose
 

 
And this is Odora with a bit of Lupine thrown in for color


 
 Jan thinks this is cat claw acacia.  I am not convinced. Answer will have to wait for next year.

No dispute on this one. We have been following the Pipevine on which the Pipevine Swallowtail butterfly lays its eggs for several weeks. We saw the eggs and now we are seeing the caterpillars. They are a bit scary looking but don't worry--they're only about an inch long.
 
You want worry, try this one on.  At the end of our walk and only about 1/4 of a mile from the crowded visitor center, we spied this creature lumbering along just off the trail . The Gila monster is indeed a scary beast.  They are poisonous and if they get ahold of something they don't release it easily. Keep your hands in your pockets and keep your distance.

 

Great finish to a great day.
 
Moral: Don't put your camera away until you are back at your car.

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