Pika

A little Pika peeking out from the last of winters snow surveying his domain.

The numbers of Pika are decreasing across the Western United States and climate change, habitat loss and other factors are likely involved. Hearing their chirps while hiking in the mountains is a sound I enjoy and I hope it does not just become a memory.

https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/97/6/1495/2628942
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180501085303.htm

Springing

With the last of the snow melted life is springing up in all shapes and sizes. Flowers, tress, grasses and water rushing to fill the streams. In addition we sighted the first Chipmunk of the year a few days ago taking a break and enjoying their lunch as the sun warms the rocks.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Small and smaller

Tiny white wildflowers gracing the forest floor measuring no more than a quarter inch in diameter become a great big world to this tiny mantis that I did not even notice in the photograph until I downloaded the photos. just another reminder that the abundance of life one our wonderful planet is small and sometimes even smaller than we see.

Fledglings

Fledglings_1
(Multiple Photos)
Well it had to happen. These two Great Horned Owl youngsters finally left the comfort of their nest cavity in an old Cottonwood tree. We first spotted a single young owl on this branch but just as we got out the camera a second flew down and joined the first. The second owl waddled around on the branch and got all cozy with their sibling who seemed a bit annoyed at having to share their perch.

Flight_school_1

A moment latter the owl in front took a leap of faith, with eyes fully closed, and landed clumsily on the perch below.

I am not sure how adult owls handle it but watching fledgling owls learn to fly is sure a nerve wracking experience for me.