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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

No place like home

Yesterday after climbing the mountain and taking a long nap I decided I simply had to expand the parking area. It has never been big enough and a real headache juggling vehicles when up to a dozen come at once. So I worked until dark taking out creosote bushes. When I could do no more I planned to start again at daylight and take out the final 3.

With my chain and pickup I had them out in no time. Much easier when you haven't climbed a mountain first. The small ones like these I threw into my pickup and hauled to a brush pile but the huge heavy ones I placed to the side temporarily to deal with when I have help.

Thereafter, I decided to go to Green Gulch in Big Bend National Park and look for butterflies. I keep reading about great lifers showing up there. On the way there I heard on the radio that the weather was going to be cool and very windy. Bummer. I scoured flowers all along Green Gulch, stopping at every place it was possible to pull over. Traffic was maddening, winds increasing, and without taking one single photo, I headed home. Tired and hungry by then, but decided to take a quick look at the oasis on my way to the house. I'm working on my April butterfly list, and there are quite a few species that I know are around but can't add until I see them.

To my surprise, after having only seen one butterfly in the park, there were butterflies galore at the oasis. I even got a lifer Zilpa Longtail. Brian had documented that species at CMO before, but I'd never seen, nor photographed, one. It was in constant motion causing much frustration. I was chiding myself for the unsatisfactory photos when I read that Kaufman, in his butterfly guide, called it "the zippy Zilpa." Made me feel a little better. 


I also saw a dragonfly but I think it was just emerging and I couldn't ID it.

And finally, a snout-less, American Snout.

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