Archive for April, 2010

Santa Rosa Plateau Today

SRP-Prairie Grass

Santa Rosa Plateau Bunchgrass Prairie - Trans Reserve Trail

It was a wonderful morning although I carried “way too much equipment” which I never used. I need to find the happy medium of comfort and having “what I think” I need. I somehow tend to lean towards the “what I think” end of the scale, and I am most often wrong.  
I arrived at the Santa Rosa Plateau early this morning and hiked a familiar area with hopes of locating some of the SRP’s elusive wildlife. There were numerous signs (fresh tracks and scat) of Bobcat and older signs of Mountain Lion. I suspect that the bobcat are currently raising young and hopefully they might become more active during the day in the near future. I will try in the coming weeks to get the the SRP earlier in the morning (SRP opens at sunrise and closes at sunset) and explore the areas showing the most bobcat sign. Chances of observing a Mountain Lion is pretty slim.
The SRP is now changing with the warming weather, the wildflowers are beginning to wane and the bunchgrass is now going to seed. The lighter colored seed cases of the bunchgrass blowing in the moderate wind today produced a pleasurable appearance of waves moving across the landscape – very nice! I’ve been told that the spring season in this area has been extended by nearly a month this El Nino year.
Wildlife did not elude me entirely today. I was able to capture a blurry photo of the Entsatina Salamander (Ensatina sp.), probably the Monterey Salamander. I also noticed something out of the corner of my eye while photographing another subject. When I examined the area on the ground where I saw the movement I found something quite interesting. It wasn’t until I was processing todays photos that I noticed the mysterious object was a spider or velvet ant – passer-byes beware!Passer By BEWARE! – Spider of Velvet AntEnsatina Salamander (Ensatina sp.)


Ensatina Salamander (Ensatina sp) - Poison Oak as well

Passer By BEWARE! Spider or Velvet Ant