Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Can It Be? Spring-like Hints

It is very difficult to avoid feeling smug about living in California this time of year. Other than knowing that we really, really do need more rain and more snow in the high country, the warm and sunny past couple of days have been a real joy. The horrid muddy spots on the road going up the hill have nearly dried up (for now and until the next rainfall, which as already mentioned Must Be Hoped For) and the wildflower season is beginning.

One of the lovely features of this particular form of media is that one gets to post pictures of whatever one wants to. The last couple of seasons I have been somewhat obsessed with fungi. This year, I made an unofficial goal to photograph all of the different varieties of fungus I saw. Sunday on our walk, we saw so many different/new kinds, I was beside myself. I was somewhat disappointed that I ended up giving up on the last two sightings. The first of those was a lovely bright red number, which Dino believes to be a type of bolete, the other was a horse poop mushroom, with a very white sponge-like cap. The bolete I passed up because that whole area was covered with big red ants that I recognize as having a nasty temper for humans sitting in the middle of their paths and the pooper was on the side of a steep-ish hillside and I could not figure out how to set up so both I and the equipment didn't tumble.

Here's one I spent some time with, though. Helvella lacunosa - Black Elfin Saddle. While I was noodling with this, Dino happily entertained himself by watching a flock of lesser goldfinches eating the seed pods of an Oregon ash.

In bird news, we participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count again. We counted 28 different species of birds, and I'm not sure how many individuals. Our favorites from this weekend: Hermit Thrush, Bullock's Oriole (yay for migration) and Yellow-rumped Warbler (ditto).
Wildflowers up: Indian warrior, baby blue eyes, shooting stars, those white belly flowers and a popcorn flower or two. Also, those tiny magenta numbers, I like those.

1 comment:

Tom Hurley said...

Save these pictures up, Praying Horse, and publish a book with your wonderful photos. It might even help you to pay for your shiny new camera!

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