Sunday, August 29, 2004

August 29, 2004

A number of random nature notes:

The monsoon is over. It might get a bit moist and rain again, but basically all the tropical moisture has cleared out and moved back south. The good part is that we have gone back to using the evaporative cooler, which is way more comfortable than air conditioning. The bad part is that there was practically no rain this summer, and it’s hot again—around 100 during the afternoon. But dry, which is a blessing.

About a week ago, I noticed a sahuaro blooming on the River Walk. I can’t imagine what it is thinking. All its compatriots long ago finished blooming and fruiting.

Last week a beautiful male phaenopepla perched in the ocotillo just outside the pond, then flew in to drink from the pond. The first one I have seen. I’ve also seen goldfinches drinking from the waterfall part of the pond. And this morning a gorgeous red dragonfly hovered over the pond, possibly thinking it is a real riparian area and looking for something to eat.

A male Virden who likes to drink from the hummingbird feeder recently installed outside my office window repeatedly flies into the window, apparently attracted by the reflective glass. He doesn’t seem to hurt himself, but it’s hard to understand why he doesn’t just give up.

And finally, arachnophobia: last night when we came home late, we almost stepped on a tarantula in the carport near the door. A broom swiftly moved the spider to the other end of the carport, but the first thing I saw when I entered the kitchen was another tarantula on the floor. It was only a little one, but it freaked me out. I think they are cool, but I don’t want them in my kitchen! This one was removed to the outside with the help of a dish and a broom.

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