Cottontail Nest

This gallery contains 4 photos.

Leonard has a small native plant garden. Grasses, Leonard’s passion, dominate the plot, along with a few wildflowers. Native California poppies also grow in profusion. A few days ago when Leonard went out to weed he unexpectedly disturbed a Nuttall’s … Continue reading

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Calliope Hummingbird

This gallery contains 3 photos.

Calliope hummingbirds (Stellula calliope) are the smallest breeding birds in North America – 3 inches long and weighing less than 0.1 ounce. Greenish above, the male has a gorget (throat) with long plumes that show magenta in the proper light. … Continue reading

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Muskrat Housekeeping

This gallery contains 4 photos.

On warm summer evenings Leonard and I enjoy setting up chairs near a site where we might be able to observe wildlife. It is so pleasant to sit as the sun sets and see what animals and birds appear. A … Continue reading

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White-lined Sphinx Caterpillar

This gallery contains 6 photos.

  White-lined sphinx moth (Hyles lineata) caterpillars occur in a wide range of color phenotypes. These color patterns are so different that it sometimes is difficult to believe they all belong to the same species. The caterpillars have four basic … Continue reading

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Cinnamon Chicks

Sandhill Crane/Chicks

Sandhill crane (Antigone canadensis) chicks are hatching and can occasionally be seen following their parents amid marsh vegetation. It is always exciting to see these little cinnamon-colored youngsters.

Sandhill crane chicks can leave the nest in about eight hours after hatching and can also swim shortly after emerging from the pale olive to buff eggs with irregular brown or grey markings. Both parents feed their young at first and gradually the chicks learn to feed themselves. The first flight for sandhill cranes occurs at about 65 to 75 days of age. The young stay with their parents for 9 to 10 months and accompany the adults through the first winter migration.

These two sandhill crane chicks and their parent were photographed along Modoc County Road 91 not far from the border with Lassen County CA. The second parent was nearby, but too far away for a family portrait.

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