Pasque morning

This is the time of year for the magnificent Pasqueflowers to bloom and brighten the hillsides, forests and meadows near town.

These flowers are part of the genus Pulsitilla family which contains numerous species spread across the globe and are the state flower of South Dakota. We noticed two distinct species while on a recent walk with both growing along the sunny hillsides and one growing just about everywhere in both sun and shade.

Hope we can get back out before they are done blooming and wishing you all a Pasque morning.

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.

Snowy Muzzle

This good looking guy with a bit of a snowy muzzle was photographed earlier this year. I am sure the grasslands where he roams are greening up, and even though he looked quite happy this snowy day, I bet he is happier now that spring has arrived.