Thursday, March 28, 2013
Diguetia canities) resembles a cocoon strung up by strands of web. Where these small spiders are abundant, you'll find their homes on nearly every shrub, especially bursage (Ambrosia spp.) and saltbush (Atriplex spp.). I found this one at Spur Cross Conservation Area attached to bursage, hanging over a desert anemone (Anemone tuberosa). Perhaps the pollinators attracted to the anemone were her prey. Very clever, those spiders!
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Arizona Department of Transportation. Able to sink roots into any gap in sidewalk, oblivious to vehicle exhaust and blossoming in the driest locations, Brittlebush will surely pioneer the restoration of this desert after the last drop of oil has been burned.
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
We can all thank urban and suburban dog owners for the role they and their pets play in job creation. Over the past decade or so, a small industry dedicated to the design, manufacture, distribution, marketing, installation and maintenance of pet waste stations has begun to flourish. In Paris, France, there is a small army of poop police dedicated to arresting dog owners who fail to clean up "canine ejections." In many cities around the U.S., a high tech solution uses DNA records of poop to track down offenders. Perhaps encouraging people to adopt more dogs is one solution to America's "job creation" problem!
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
African daisies (Dimorphotheca sinuata) brighten up suburban landscapes around Phoenix, thriving in arid landscapes that have soils and climate similar to deserts in Namibia, from where they were imported. Also known as Cape Marigold, this species is often marketed in "wildflower" seed mixes.
Monday, March 4, 2013
The most ubiquitous of North American owls is the Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus), which claims year round residency throughout the continent. In the Sonoran desert, they will occupy old hawk nests among the limbs of saguaros, but do not build their own. This mama owl has returned for a second year to her cactus fortress along a trail in the Sonoran Preserve in north central Phoenix.