A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to go on top of Coyote Ridge on the east side of the south bay to look for tule elk. No tule elk for us, at least not on that day HOWEVER! We did see plenty bay checkerspot butterflies, which are a federally endangered species, some of their caterpillars (!!!), a few horned larks, golden eagles, red-tails…. It was also just a gorgeous day, with the hills green and purple and white and gold and orange from all the wildflowers.
Today was a day and a half as far as field research goes. A friend of mine and I have been commissioned to get film of red-legged frogs in Año for Jeff Corwin’s TV show (:O :O :O). SO…I can’t show you guys the very amateur film we got, at least I don’t think I can. BUT we saw so much wildlife today, it was wild, including an adult bald eagle, an osprey, a rufous hummingbird, a bobcat, a belted kingfisher, an elephant seal, AND a San Francisco garter basking in the sunlight. I haven’t gotten a shot of this extremely rare subspecies of the Common Gartersnake until now, so enjoy!!!
On a hike through more of the Santa Cruz Mountains, we found probably at least 50 varied thrushes, saw one pileated woodpeckers and heard one of his friends, and found a California newt. Of course, I didn’t take photos of any of these! But the trees were sooo beautiful and I was totally geeking out because it had been such a nice hike…I took photos of trees 🙂
These actually aren’t shorebirds, or at least not all the time. After they breed, they go to the beach, but they spend a lot of their time in short grasslands. And they’re a protected species! Go long-billed curlews!
We got to the top of Nibb’s Knob in Uvas Canyon County Park! In a somewhat cruel twist, you do not get a view at 2800 ft after a 3.6 mile hike, but we had plenty of views on the way up and back down. And I think rocks are pretty.