March 18, 2015
One of our most favorite places in Tucson is Sabino Canyon Recreation Area. We were up early and out the door by 8:00 am and hoping that the cloudy skies would deter other would be hikers. Our plan was to hike/walk for as long as we were enjoying ourselves and having fun. Hiking is not always about the exercise, it is also a time to connect with nature and all things beautiful...a time to relax the mind, heart, and soul. When we left Sabino Canyon, all was better than good!
It was not a first photographing a Gamble's Quail, but it was a first photographing one in a tree. I wish I could share the beautiful sound this fellow was making. The male's song is a single note caaw which we heard before we saw him.They belong to the "callipepla" family which comes from the Greek kalli (beautiful) and peplos (robe).
|A juvenile Phainopepla will gradually acquire black feathers throughout it's 1st year.|
|Longflower Tube Tongue|
|Sasguaro Cactus bloom...first for the season.|
|Wild Dwarf Morning-glory|
|From a picnic area where we stopped for water and a snack, we could see Sabino Dam. We decided to head that way...|
|A Cooper's Hawk...I think...that we saw fly over the creek.|
Last, we were excited to see our first Gila Monster...not one, but 2 in one hike! Since they spend 95% of their time in underground burrows, we felt like we had hit the jackpot! Because of human encroachment, they are considered a threatened species.
The first one was out in the open right next to the trail and not moving very much.
I clicked away trying to get a picture of his forked tongue...
The second one we saw was under a tree and brush...he was moving a bit faster...
Our time meandering through the desert was about 5 hours...mostly very peaceful and quiet. Life is good!
Until next time, take care and...