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A Spectacular Field of Sunflowers

June 8, 9 am.The last week of May I was on the property we call the Benbow area, walking along a small creek that has no name, when ahead of me I saw a field, stretching as far as I could see, that was filled with a golden yellow sunflower. When got closer I could see...

The Elusive Grasshopper Sparrow

May 29th, 9 am.Sometimes it is the bird that is not so colorful or flashy that catches my attention. Today as I am walking around the grassland fields in the south end of the valley, I hear the high trill of the Grasshopper sparrow, Ammodrumus savannarum. This little,...

Ode to Cow Parsnip

May 17, 9 am. Today the plant, Cow Parsnip, Heracleum maximum, has caught my attention. In the woodlands and along the creek it is a spectacular specimen of a plant.  It is also known as American cow-parsnip, Indian celery, Indian rhubarb or pushki. It is sometimes...

Hidden Nests in the Grass and Wetlands

May 12,  9 amIt is with much anticipation that I set out today in hope of finding some nesting birds. For weeks now, it has been apparent that birds are displaying territoriality everywhere I go. The Red- winged blackbirds are the most dramatic with the showing off of...

The Handsome Common Merganser

May 6, 9 am.Today the sunshine is intense, I can feel the ground drying up around me as I walk along the east side of Outlet creek.  The sky i s a brilliant blue and I am grateful for our wonderful air quality. It is a lucky day for me because I am alone in the beauty...

The Sea of Blue

May 6, 1:00 pm.Today is a glorious day and I am out looking at the flowers that are blooming in the Little Lake Valley. It is the peak of the Blue Camas bloom, Camassia quamash, a perennial with leaves emerging from a persistent bulb in a basal rosette. This is the...