Monday, December 12, 2011

The Green Desert

 The lush deserts of southern Arizona are unique among the deserts of the world.  The rains of December bring out the vibrant colors of these amazing plants.  The picture to the left is from Organ Pipe National Park where we drove the 21 mile Ajo Mountain loop gravel road.  This habitat also has its unique compliment of bird and animal life, such as LeConte's Thrasher, Black-throated Sparrow, Verdin, Antelope Ground Squirrel and Desert Cottontail all new for our trip.

We spent a day walking the grounds of the Sonoran Desert Museum.  We certainly would recommend this outstanding facility with its exceptional native animal displays, landscaping, education programs, staff, volunteer corps, and overall attention to detail.  We enjoyed the many changes since our visit many years ago.  Pictured to the left is a pair of Harris's Hawks, part of the 5 family group in their free-flying Bird of Prey Program.
Here it is mid December and fall colors have come to Tucson, Arizona.  We spent the day hiking the trails of Sabino Canyon along the beautiful creek and waterfall (pictured to the right).  This riparian area is a magnet for overwintering birds and wildlife.  Some of the birds we saw here were: Rock Wrens, Crissal Thrasher, Pyrrhuloxia. and and Phainopepla.

This photo was taken at the Saguaro National Park in East Tucson, where we enjoyed the wildlife drive and nature trails.  You always equate Tucson with the Saguaro, the image of everyone's  perfect cactus.  We are enjoying our visit with friends that left Green Bay many years ago, John & Patti Hancock.  We have been watching the Packers win at Touchdowns,  enjoying Christmas programs at their church and catching up visiting.

Best to all,  Ty & Ida