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Photos / Sounds

What

Western Pond Turtle(?) Actinemys marmorata

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

This baby/juvenile turtle was hanging out in Nevada Creek, which drains a landscape dominated by arid oak woodland and chaparral in northeast Napa County. I was surprised to find a turtle here, and was especially excited to find a young one - I've never seen one before. It was only about 2.5 inches long and had a noticeable tail (I think it's tucked around and sticking out from the left side in the picture). Although there is not much in the way of riparian habitat along this creek, I'd guess that at least portions remain wet year-round, as there were lots of small fish and a Belted Kingfisher flew through the area.

I'm assuming this was a western pond turtle, since the location was pretty remote. I can't imagine that an introduced species would be hanging out here. However, I'm no expert in turtle identification, so confirmation of the species would be much appreciated. The last picture that I've added shows the habitat. The turtle is circled in red.

Photos / Sounds

What

pitcher sage Lepechinia calycina

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

I've been wondering for a long time what this fragrant plant is. I finally encountered it in bloom and was able to figure it out - pitcher sage. It was growing in chamise-dominated chaparral.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Pacific Newts Genus Taricha

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

A few newts were hanging out near the mouth of a small tributary to Nevada Creek. My guess is that they were California Newts, but I was unable to get a satisfactory look. According to the range map from the California Wildlife Habitat Relationships program, this area seems to be at the edge of the range for the Rough-skinned Newt, and I'm not sure the picture I got is good enough to rule out that species.

Photos / Sounds

What

mariposa lilies Genus Calochortus

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

I found these bright yellow, white, and pale yellow Calochortus lillies growing within 50 feet of each other. I'm not sure if they were the same species or different species.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Flame Skimmer Libellula saturata

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

Found along Nevada Creek.

Photos / Sounds

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What

American Rubyspot Hetaerina americana

Observer

emilyheaton

Date

May 27, 2012

Description

Found along Nevada Creek.

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