04/10/2023 gobble gobble

Two male and one female Wild Turkeys walked down the camp road! This is one of the males. We determined they are the paler southwestern form after looking in the Sibley bird guide.

04/06/2023 morning wander at Black Mesa State Park

We are now at Black Mesa State Park. Mom and briar look for a bird!
We went to the start of the Petrified Forest trail. We will explore more in a few days.
Here’s a petrified log! Briar also smelled it.
I love all the grama grass here!
This big flat rock had an unexplained old bolt and washer in it.
Here’s the lichen on the same big flat rock!
There’s a Say’s Phoebe in here. we also saw a bunch of American Goldfinches and House Finches. There was a Canyon Towhee by the park office! We have also been hearing flickers and robins.

12/23/2022 feeding our friends

Briar was very interested in the three squirrels.
Shackleton liked the sun, the squirrels, and the chickadees and juncos! Good stuff! I was pleased to see the juncos eating chenopodium seeds and wild sunflower seeds off the dead plants as well as the supplemental bird seeds we put out today for the cold weather. It got up to 19 F.

12/22/2022 definitely no birds only leaves

I put out bird seed since it’s so cold and a flock of a dozen or so juncos visited. They never came when we first moved here- they needed the cover of the wood pile and later the brush pile.
I put the seeds on the stepping stones and by the brush pile especially to make it easier and safer.
Shackleton might have noticed the birds. The birds say any and all movement was leaves! Definitely no birds!! Fortunately for them, this polar explorer is indoors only except on a leash. Much safer for birds and warmer for Shacks.

06/12/2022 a walk in the park

Just a bit of prairie here at Ruby Grant Park in NW Norman.
Oh wait! A box turtle!!
It is good pollinator habitat and good prairie too. I heard one Eastern Meadowlark singing and at least one Dickcissel.
A weevil on green milkweed pods.
A family of baby milkweed bugs on green milkweed pods. We looked but didn’t find any Monarch butterfly caterpillars.
Sideoats grama grass.
Abby has suggested this is bottlebrush squirrel tail grass.
It has very exciting seedheads!
Thanks to Mom and Abby for identifying this as Apocynum cannabinum, or dogbane.
There was a lot of it along the trail and we saw the dogbane beetle that eats it too!
Possibly prairie acacia?
A non native lady beetle on the acacia.
Really great stands of Rudbeckia amplexicaulis here!

06/03/2022

Lyre leaf sage sprouting where I have sprinkled it in front yard.
Who’s this lurking in the buffalo grass?
Shackleton of course!  He persuaded the Chef to go outside.
The Chef decided it was so nice out we walked to Braum’s for dinner.
Then we walked to the duck pond and saw some geese and their baby goslings!
Close up of the babies.
There were a lot of winecups around the duck pond! Great to see.
Possibly smells nice too? The end.

Duck pond wildflowers

Blue eyed grass is a native wildflower that I was happy to see sprouting near the duck pond on my walk home today!
A wild fowl!
Storms approaching. (I made it home.)

Water, water everywhere

The Chef helped me connect and lay out the second soaker hose where I will attempt to plant some winecup seeds soon.
The winecup seeds in question, a few days ago, in stratification in the fridge. They’re ready to get started.
Imagine my surprise to look up from my garden spreadsheet and find a Gray Catbird on the closer birdbath! I saw one last year in the yard in spring migration too.
SPLASH
The lone rain barrel out in the yard is an overflow for another one, and I have placed it next to a new plant (the beautyberry) so I can hopefully water it someday.

Irrigation for the container garden

The Black Vulture egg has hatched!! We were not sure what happened to the second egg.
One of the parents watched Mom take a picture through the well house door.
We checked on the chickadees and a parent is still sticking close. Very close.
Garden transplants and path rescues are actually doing pretty good in the shade and relative cool of the garage.
You can see several Mexican plums in here. That tree had a lot of seedlings!
Even more plums! And some other stuff.
Mom and Dad set up the irrigation for the tomatoes, greens, and herbs.
A tiny seedling. Also maybe oregano?? I am not sure. We’ll find out later.
The irrigation timer also drips some water for the birds!
The lyre leaf sage is really getting going!
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