It's a mid-sized sparse tree common on our neighborhood trail.
eating a bee
Near the Rio Grande Village campgrounds, we were excited to finally see this Zone-tailed Hawk. They look very much like Turkey Vultures in size and shape. It is thought that they evolved this similarity so potential prey is not as alarmed by them.
This is the only bird track I know how to identify. Unlike most other birds in Texas, Greater Roadrunners have feet with 2 toes pointing forward and 2 pointing back.
Acorn Woodpeckers and Mexican Jays were the 2 most common noisy birds in Pine Canyon. The Acorn Woodpeckers were associated with several large dead pine trees that were literally covered in holes that they woodpeckers had made to put acorns into. You can see a few of the holes on the branch this bird is sitting on.
We saw this tiny grey Praying Mantis on the gravel trail on the way to Pine Canyon. It ran very fast and did not move back-and-forth like most mantises I've seen. This one seemed adapted to live on the ground among the rocks.
drinking from the mud
We passed 2 people on the Window Trail who had seen a Black Bear cross the trail in front of them. There was other evidence of bears on the trail too, like this big pile of poop!
These large black and orange grasshoppers were very common in the park. They were dramatically colored, and showed bring pink when they spread their wings, and made a loud clicking when they flew.
This was the only Dickcissel we saw on the trip. It's a female that happened to tbe perched up on a plant as we drove by. I stopped and it stayed there long enough for this photo.
These little yellow-faced birds were quite common in the park.
The park was full of Loggerhead Shrike, like this one perched on a "Crown of Thorns" plant.
Cactus Wrens were one of the most common birds in the Big Bend area.
Spotted this on the road as we were driving. We stopped and turned around to see it up close and get some pictures.
The strong white cheek and black tail with slightly white trailing edge are distinctive.
You can see the yellow tusks in this photo.
This possum just wandered into view as I was standing by the creek counting ducks and shorebirds.
Taken by John Mandell on Sherbourne St. From John:
"This is not a very great photo (through the glass door), but you can see the beautiful tail on this cool animal. We've gotten 2 really good views and a few suspected glimpses, but none recently. This was Jan 2009 in our back yard."