Sunday, September 18, 2011


Yesterday, I accompanied Dino on his usual morning walk - we headed to the red gate, then headed upstream, then home. This was an excellent bird walk and gave us our 89th bird species for the ranch: Phainopepla. We also saw two blue herons and a second year juvenile bald eagle, plus our usuals. Flickers are starting to come back now that we're moving into fall.

I took a second walk mid-afternoon. I wanted to go to the spring by Altar Rock and see if anybody showed up there - birds often go there to drink - but that was a bust. I gave up after a bit and walked down Lion Creek's dry bed to the road, stopping to look at milkweed fluff and found these on one of the plants where the pods hadn't fluffed out yet (warning insect shot): Large Milkweed Bugs, Oncopeltus fasciatus.

I was having a heck of a time with the wind and count myself lucky the bugs are in any sort of focus at all. Yes, there are Small Milkweed Bugs too.

I decided to try some fall vegetables. After being thoroughly disgusted by my lack of planning earlier, having no seeds, and being completely skunked at finding any vegetable seeds at all anywhere in Oakhurst, Dino came through for me by bringing home some seedlings from his Thursday trip to Mariposa. Broccoli and beets. And he found some snow pea seeds. All that got planted in the two available cinder block beds yesterday. The cucumbers are putting in a very spirited second effort now, both the Armenian and the lemon, and we had an excellent cuke salad last night again. The bees are very busy in that bed again, which gives me hope we'll get a few more weeks of cukes. 

Check out the web site I did for the local Audubon society:

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