Monday, June 14, 2010

Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve

The Nature Conservancy owns and manages a preserve near Patagonia on Sonoita Creek. It is a grassland with 120-year-old Cottonwood trees along the old creek bed.

A railroad was constructed and this changed the hydrology of the area, and now the ecology is in transition. The railroad was abandoned, and the old rail bed has been converted to part of a trail system on the preserve.

Butterflies enjoyed the wet areas and flowering plants.

There were other creatures there, too, like this lizard that was either hiding or staying cool in the shade.

This butterfly is common there, and is called a Pipevine Swallowtail.

Though a bit soft, this photo shows a Common Yellowthroat.

This Black Phoebe was by the creek, catching and eating flying insects. It was the first time I ever saw one of these, but like the next few birds, it is unique so easily identified. It is jet black with a white belly.

Though I saw my first-ever Gray Hawk at the Patagonia Rest Area, I got my best-ever photo here at The Nature Conservancy preserve.

This preserve is a great area to see the Vermilion Flycatcher. This is the female, and she spent most of her time on a nest.

The male Vermilion Flycatcher is a sight to behold! It is good to know that not all the flycatchers are hard to identify ... this one would stand out in a crowd.

1 comment:

Cynthia said...

Really enjoyable, your recounting this vacation. Thank you, jonathan, for posting the photos and sharing your memories. = )