There’s a pretty little nature park in the middle of Fort Sill, Oklahoma, named after the last passenger pigeon on earth. Martha died in 1914 in the Cincinnati Zoo. Her billions of other kin had been exterminated out of existence by greed and thoughtlessness.
Several decades ago, Fort Sill naturalists wanted to reclaim a part of the well-groomed military grounds for wildlife. They planted many native trees and shrubs, and let it go wild. Then they named it after Martha the passenger pigeon. Read the rest of this entry »
You never know what you’re gonna see when you get out of the car to stretch your legs. I was munching on an oatmeal-chocolate chip cookie when this little guy motored by at Queen Wilhemena State Park in Arkansas. Read the rest of this entry »
I didn’t realize the fall wildflowers in the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge rivaled those of spring. There are patches of brilliant yellow Maximilian sunflowers that grow along a single stem like hollyhocks. And the purple liatris is everywhere amid the prairie grass and prairie broomweed. I’m not sure what species it is exactly (gayfeather something I think) but even the wildflower lady at the refuge has a bit of a time narrowing it down, so I’m not gonna worry about it.
I haven’t been able to do much blogging as my computer was in the hospital for a month. It’s got a new 1TB hard drive, and some other upgrades. So now I can get back to my photo editing! Read the rest of this entry »
Oklahoma is smack in the middle of one of the monarch butterfly migration routes, and for butterfly enthusiasts, that’s a big deal. The town of Blanchard, southwest of Oklahoma City, held a Monarch Butterfly Festival on Oct. 1 at Lion Park, and monarchs were tagged with numbers written on white dots and then released.
I’m not sure what kind of glue will keep the tags on the butterflies through all kinds of weather, and through thousands of wingbeats. Read the rest of this entry »
Today the angels are having a bowling tournament, and they must have busted some water pipes because the morning has been as dark as dusk behind a waterfall. I planned to enjoy another sunny Sunday at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge but I’ll have to relive the memories of last week with this blog post.
Because of Oklahoma’s location in the country’s midsection, there are a lot of flora and fauna I’m familiar with from both east and west. Sometimes, like with the buttonbush above, I’m reminded of my year in the Okefenokee swamp. There were several butterfly species feasting on the nectar, several of which were new to me. Read the rest of this entry »
I see some of my Maine friends posting their spring photographs and I smile to myself. Spring comes very, very late in Maine. We’ve had Spring for three months here in southwest Oklahoma.
The rains have kept the prairie flowers coming, with some old ones going to seed now, and a few new ones coming in. Read the rest of this entry »
I was on the prowl for flowers. And critters. And birds. It was the first day of May and things were a bustin’ out all over!
I’ll start with the flowers. The Treasure Lake portion of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge had the best masses of color, with Indian paintbrush predominating. Read the rest of this entry »
Early spring began in late February here in southwest Oklahoma. Henbit is a common “weed” but when it blooms it adds a welcome flood of color to a landscape that had been brown for months. Read the rest of this entry »
Since I moved to Southern California, I’ve been “saving” a visit to Mojave National Preserve for just the right weekend – an early April birding trip with the San Bernardino Valley Audubon Society.
The weather was perfect, I added two birds to my life list, and the scenery surpassed expectations. Read the rest of this entry »
This large and gorgeous moth is also known as the hummingbird moth. There are several types of “hummingbird” or “hawk” moths – in Maine I photographed the Hummingbird Clearwing which is also a sphinx moth. Read the rest of this entry »