Saturday, August 6, 2022

Feathers and Fronds

Corona de Tucson

August 6, 2022 

August 1...first sunrise for the month

Living in the desert and writing we had some really good storms with lots of rain is always a good thing...unless you have an appointment and have to be heading to the city during one of those monsoon storms.  Flash flood warning signs along the roads should not be taken lightly.    

Lots of rushing water, mud and debris


I-10 headed west towards Tucson...

We have also had some beautiful blue skies with big puffy white clouds this week and some really decent temps for this time of mornings with highs in the low 90s. Jack has taken advantage of the weather to enjoy some early morning ball play outside.


On one of those blue sky kind of days, we headed to REI in search for Joe a pair of shoes.  These palm trees are so tall and so neatly manicured outside their store.  We have a palm tree just on the other side of the fence.  We can only assume it was planted when the area was a fairway in years gone by.  You can see in the first photo of the is tall, but not manicured like these.  At first, I thought the dead fronds (yes, I had to look that up) were quite ugly and should be removed.  But the tree is too tall and since it's not in our yard, we have no plans to pay to have it done.  And then, I realized the birds love those dead fronds. 


I have had a change of heart during the past year or so and can honestly say I am not so bothered by the fronds anymore.  I do enjoy watching the birds go in and out and in-between them.  The Cactus Wrens are particularly fond of the old palm tree with its fronds.  Maybe it is because all kinds of insects and spiders make their home in there.  

I was excited to find Vidalia onions at the grocery store this week.  As far as onions go, they are crunchy and sweet and a yummy reminder of my home state. 

We are counting down the days...three more til Joe's stitches are removed.  Lots of time has been spent enjoying the patio and I am happy to report the Cardinal is all dried out and back to his handsome self.

He has visited often this week and has even brought along one of his own...a younger Northern Cardinal.

The mornings and early evenings are usually the busiest times of the day for bird visitors.  This week it has been all about the Gamble's Quails.  Moms, dads, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles and cousins have all joined in the party at the oasis this week.  I may have even seen a few grandmas and grandpas too. 

It is a treat to see splashes of yellow from time to time.

female Lesser Goldfinch

female Oriole

The White-winged Dove spend most of their time pecking at the ground for seeds and tiny grains of rocks (which help with digestion).  I was surprised to see them on the feeder enjoying the goodies.

The Gamble's Quail and White-winged Dove are the two largest birds that visit the yard...both are ground feeders, but have decided they like the butter bites too.


I think the White-winged Dove is quite a distinguished looking bird.

While I spend time clicking away, Jack spends time napping... 

Dover spends time napping...

but not Sally.  She is always on guard.

Joe asked me yesterday morning if I was tired of our yard yet. I answered with a great big no and the puppies followed with a great big amen !  
July 31 @ 7:15 pm

August 1 @ 6:10 am...the puppies waiting not so patiently for their breakfast picnic on the patio

August 2 mid morning

August 3...mid morning...a gathering of Gila Woodpeckers (do you see the two that are hiding in the fronds?)

August 4...early morning

August 5...afternoon...not sure what this Cactus Wren was doing, but he was doing it for quite a few minutes

And today, August 6 @ 6:00 am


It has been a nice week...hoping you had a nice week as well. Looking forward to next week...hoping you are as well !  

Until next time...


Aren't these young Gamble's Quails just the cutest birds ever? 


  1. Yes, those youngster quails are the cutest but that juvenile cardinal looked as if he was having a bad hair day! Those pooches are just the cutest!! I would not be tired of your patio/yard either!

    1. Thanks Janna. The puppies at this house are spoiled rotten so don’t let that cuteness fool you! We fed the birds for many years in Georgia before full-time RVing and never even noticed the young cardinals there. Considering it was born blind and naked, I guess he is doing pretty good…can take up to a year before he resembles an adult.

  2. Something I forgot--you said, "planted when it was a fairway.."--was you subdivision once a golf course too like the community of Sunsites? We are told that our community was once so vibrant, that there were many water features on the gold course and so many different birds. So sad that it's all now gone, the trees are dying for lack of water, ponds are all gone, sad.

    1. That is very sad. Yes, our back yard was on a fairway. The golf course closed in 2007 and there are several Australian pines that have also died (before we moved here). And as you can see, the palms aren’t doing all that great either. The path we walk is the old golf cart path.

  3. It's amazing the habitat that is created by the palm fronds, the native palms here have fronds that reach the ground, providing shelter for more critters.
    So fun watching the backyard activities and the pups

    1. It is pretty cool Jeff and to think I wanted the fronds cut off because I thought they were ugly…shame on me! Life is good at the oasis!

  4. I could watch those quail and their antics all day long!

    1. Me too guys! The Gamble’s do provide lots of entertainment…and put a smile on my face.

  5. It's important to have at least one watch goose in a flock.....I'm sure Dover and Jack are happy that Sally has assumed that role so they can snooze in safety and peace!

    1. You are so right on both accounts Sue. Haven't heard from you in awhile...hope all is well in Spokane.

    2. we're fine, just busy. I'll get to a blog in the next week, finger's crossed!

  6. Palms take on such different personalities depending on fronds or not - prettier when their gone, but yes they do provide a nice habitat for the birdies! And you have such a great yard for them too. That wren looks like they had a rough night :-) Your pups are so adorable.

    1. Thank you Jodee. It’s been a nice summer for birds and monsoons which is way great since we have been homebound.

  7. Our quail babies were so few this year but yesterday I saw a family with three little ones. They are so fun to watch as they tumble over the rocks going up the hill. Dad didn't seem to slow for them at all. That young northern cardinal is so interesting with its various feathers and colors. Love seeing Jack with his ball:) What sweet puppies. Glad Sally is taking on guard duty.

    1. The quail are by far the cutest bird babies I have ever seen Pam. They scratch around on the ground like chickens & don’t let the other ones in their space. Jack is living the cool mornings…I am too! When it’s hot we have to play ball inside…😩!