Today’s selection comes from Ivar Husa from Washington State, but the photos are from Arizona. Ivar’s captions and ID’s are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.
These photos were taken near Buenos Aires NWR southwest of Tucson. I might add near our southern border.
Crested Caracara (Caracara plancus) are birds of prey that often fly stealthily by staying below treetops, rising above only when they get close to their nest. This one bears a rodent for the chicks.
These chicks fledged within a few weeks of these photos being taken.
It was jarring to see for myself a new section of border wall slashing through wildlands southwest of Tucson. Animal movements are restricted, causing ecological damage.
Here are images taken south of Tucson AZ
American Snout, Libytheana carinenta These were present in prodigious numbers at lower levels of the Santa Rita Mountains. I crudely estimate that along an 8 mile stretch of Box Canyon Road that perhaps 100,000 American Snout could be seen.
Here is a look at them along the road. Every black spot on the road, every one, is an American Snout. They had record rains this year which perhaps explains their spectacular abundance here. Sulphurs were nearly as abundant in other locations.
Checkered White, Pyrgus albescens:
Dainty Sulphur, Nathalis iole. Did they say ‘dainty’? This butterfly has about a 2.5cm wingspan: about an inch.
Variegated Fritillary, Euptoieta Claudia:
Queen butterfly, Danaus gilippus:
Tiny Checkerspot, Dymasia dymas. Did they say ‘tiny’? These have wingspans in the range of 2.3 to 3.5 cm.—around an inch.
Painted Lady, Vanessa cardui:
Finally, this cutie. I showed a picture to a local birder (as one does, herpetologists being less abundant in the field) and asked “What do you call this red-spotted toad? “:
To my surprise and amusement he replied “Red-spotted Toad.” Anaxyrus punctatus. This one is yet only about 3.5mm (1.5”) long and will grow much larger.
Photos taken with Canon 5D SR with 100-400 Mark II and 1.4X multiplier.