Today’s Post

What the Quail?

What the Quail?

We are so excited to meet today’s bird! We have never met a quail before and of course we have to find the ones with the cutest feathers around!

F17CCC68-D345-426E-AD8B-FE99BFF65F33

Gambel’s Quail Fun Facts: 

  • Both males and females have the topknot of feathers on their head. Males have a black patch on their bellies.
  • They are about the size of a basketball.
  • Gambel’s quails are ground dwellers. You can see them running around the ground.
  • They live in groups called coveys.
  • They are omnivores. They eat insects as chicks and graduate to mostly plant material as adults.
  • Females chirp to their eggs before they  hatch and the chicks cheep back to her.

02BDE3D4-FA25-4777-90B8-D5C1B9656A60

These funny little quails can fly, but they mostly run around looking for food! They are so neat to watch in their little family groups.

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Slow Mover

Slow Mover

We headed to the heart of the Mojave Desert in search of one of two species of tortoises! These desert tortoises call this their home and we were thrilled to learn more about them!

7C6942F8-76AB-4ED6-867E-F9624A0E245C

Desert Tortoise Fun Facts:

  • These tortoises spend most of their time in burrows and shelters. They are inactive most of the year. They stay in cool areas to avoid losing water during the heat and they hibernate during the winter.
  • You’ll find them mostly after a rain.
  • They can live up to 80 years.
  • Desert tortoises have sharp claws that help them dig burrows. They can spend 95% of their lives in burrows.
  • Desert tortoises are slow growing. They still are only around 8 inches at 16 years old. They can reach up to 30 inches total.
  • These herbivores are listed as threatened and vulnerable- depending on the population.
  • Their biggest threat is habitat loss.

Desert Tortoise

These amazing creatures are made for the desert. They can survive a year without direct access to water! WOW!!

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, nature, reptiles, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Sheep!

Sheep!

We headed to the mountains today to find one neat and large mammal. We had fun climbing all around the trails and looking for these sheep that can climb mountains.

B83CA329-A763-4950-8BF9-DBB1FA7F351C

Desert Bighorn Sheep Fun Facts: 

  • Bothe male and females have horns. The males are large and curved while the females are smaller.
  • It can take a male up to 8 years to have fully formed horns. Their horns can weigh up to 30 lbs.
  • They can weigh up to 280 lbs.
  • Males are known for their head to head combat during mating season.
  • They have excellent eyesight.
  • They live in small herds, made up females and offspring. The males live in bachelor groups.
  • These herbivores are diurnal.
  • They use their horns and hooves to removes spines from cactus so they can eat them.

C6EF8F45-4B09-4EDD-9BBE-CF7AF0E83B01

These agile sheep and so amazing! They are built to climb and to survive in the scrub land. Watching the males go head to head can be quiet impressive and a bit scary!

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bird in the Burrow

Bird in the Burrow

We had a great adventure looking for an unusual bird today. This owl doesn’t live in trees it lives in burrows underground. Neat!

E280C23C-AA84-4FCC-B2E3-F12BAE3E311D

Burrowing Owl Fun Facts: 

  • Burrowing owls live in burrows they dig themselves or ones that other animals have made, like prairie dogs.
  • Burrowing owls are carnivores. They eat small mammals, insects, lizards and birds.
  • They hunt day or night.
  • Burrowing owls line their burrow entrances with animal poop. This marks their territory and it attracts insects that the owls eat.
  • They stow food to have during the incubation period of their eggs.
  • Burrowing owls spend most of their time near the ground.

B73E42DF-566F-4792-BADA-C7C1AD64586A

Burrowing owls are so gorgeous. They are more tolerant of Co2 because they live underground where the gas can be more concentrated. This bird’s adaptations are so cool.

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Armadillo Armadillo

Armadillo Armadillo

We headed out to find one of the most iconic animals of the southwest today! We didn’t have to travel far- these funny armored mammals were hanging out right in our camp! Often only seen as roadkill it was fun to observe one wandering around in the wild.

778802F7-7667-4965-B34E-D33C3EB6E6CF

Nine banded armadillo fun facts: 

  • Armadillos are related to sloths and anteaters. Their relatives, including the giant armadillos have been on earth for around 50 million years.
  • They are carnivores. They can eat up to 40,000 ants at a time!
  • Unlike other mammals who must maintain a high body temperature, they keep their temp at around 90 degrees.
  • They can grow up to 30 inches long.
  • Not all nine banded armadillos have nine bands- they can have anywhere from 8 to 11 bands.
  • These nocturnal animals are covered in a keratin based armor, except on their ears, legs and underside.
  • Nine banded armadillos live in burrows that they dig.
  • These armadillos are unable to curl up in to a ball to avoid predators.

FC3EDF97-EF42-4AED-9817-AA00ED4DBA5B

Armadillos are definitely odd looking with their built in suit of armor, their pig like snouts and their clawed feet. We always love seeing them forage for grubs. And can you believe they are related to sloths?

 

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Blue Spines

Blue Spines

After encountering a prairie dog town yesterday, we met a little reptile who calls these parts home! It’s always good to see so many species and this unusual looking lizard definitely caught our eye.

C7D754CF-B105-4BA2-899F-DB9CB36D424C

Blue Spiny Lizard Fun Facts: 

  • These lizards can grow up to 14 inches long.
  • They have spiny scales,
  • Males are more blue-green in color. Both males and females have a black ring around on their neck.
  • These relatives of the iguana spend much of their day under rocks and crevices to avoid the hottest part of the day.
  • Blue spiny lizards are carnivores. They eat insects.
  • They are listsed as Least Concern by the IUCN.

F1A2C0EC-BC17-47C0-B5E4-9C2B6D175CD6

These interesting lizards are so neat looking with bumpy scales. We think they are quiet handsome.

Categories: adventure, animal rescue, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, reptiles, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Doggies of the Desert!

Doggies of the Desert!

We headed out from camp today to meet on the residents for the prairie and the desert. We were excited to find these rodents. Can you guess who were are meeting?

Let’s learn more about the prairie dog!

Prairie Dog

Black Tailed Prairie Dog Fun Facts: 

  • Prairie dogs live in groups called coteries. These family groups include a male or two and several females. The females stay in their group for their whole lives.
  • Their prairie dog towns give shelter to other animals. Their towns also attract insects which birds depend on.
  • They are vocal. Scientists are just beginning to realize how complicated their language is.
  • Prairie dog populations have fallen by 95%, this is mainly due to habitat loss.
  • These prairie dogs do not hibernate.
  • Prairie dogs are herbivores.
  • Black tailed prairie dogs are listed as Least Concern by the ICUN.
  • They get their name from the barking noises they make.

29820FC6-4FBF-44D5-AEE7-AB759AF5D153These rodents and cousins of the common grey squirrel are one of our favorites. There are five species of these little dudes. Scientists are working to protect their habitat and them as they are important for the survival of many species.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Run Bird Run!

EepRun Bird Run!

We are meeting one of the coolest birds in the southwest today- the greater roadrunner! Luckily this one didn’t have a coyote chasing it!

897872ED-5657-4BBD-B6CB-685B1DCAEBE3

Greater Roadrunner Fun Facts: 

  • Roadrunners have X shaped feet. The Pueblo people consider this shape sacred as it is thought to ward off evil spirits.
  • They are carnivores. They spent most of our time on the ground hunting small mammals, reptiles and toads.
  • These fierce predators slam their prey against rocks. They are also known for their ability to kill rattlesnakes, scorpions and venomous lizards.
  • Roadrunners can reach speeds of up to 20 mph.
  • They have a special gland by their eye to help excrete excess salt!
  • Roadrunners are territorial.
  • They are not good fliers.

8A15DF21-A884-42D4-B84A-9ABE0C9B87FA

These funny looking birds are suited for the terrestrial habitat. Those fast feet give them an advantage in finding food and staying away from predators. Once only found in the southwest, these birds are moving east can be found as far as Louisiana now.

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hello Kitty!

Hello Kitty!

EEA2B434-D773-447F-AE67-FD375D02B0EB

We are excited to meet our first animal of this year’s travels. We unpacked our gear at our camp. We’ll be exploring several kinds of habitats here the Southwest. We spent our first evening looking for a wild cat, the ocelot. These spotted cats roam in the southern most regions of the southwest. They are not easy to spot, but we were lucky and found one!

04A4EBB4-3127-441F-B433-A632945C473C

Ocelot Fun Facts: 

  • Ocelots are mostly nocturnal. Like all cats, they are carnivores. They eat rabbits, rodents, birds and reptiles.
  • Ocelots can swim well.
  • Ocelots are mostly solitary. They scent mark their territories.
  • They are kept as pets, which is a very bad idea. They are not like your domestic housecat, They are strong and destructive. These cats belong in the wild.
  • They are know to be shy.
  • Females give birth to a litter in a den, where the cubs will stay til they around 3 months old.

5FB30FE2-8FA7-4DDC-99F7-66ECC20A1FB2

These small big cats are gorgeous. The were once listed as threatened by the IUCN because they were hunted for their coats. They still are losing habitat, but for now their populations are stable. Yay!!!

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Adventure Calls in the Southwest

Adventure Calls in the Southwest

Helloooooo! Did you guess our location? We are in the American Southwest! We are going around the area to meet some of its local inhabitants. We’ll be meeting birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians. We may even need to stop and talk to a cactus or two! Hehehe!

Today we are going to cover some fun facts about this amazing area and then tomorrow we will start to meet some animal friends!

Southwest Fun Facts:

  • The American Southwest is compromised mainly of New Mexico and Arizona, encompassing parts of Texas, Nevada, California, Colorado and the Northern parts of Mexico.
  • This area is considered to an arid to semi-arid habitat. They get little moisture.
  • The mountains do get snow fall.
  • There are three desert regions here- the Mojave, the Sonoran and the Chihuahuan desert.
  • The Chihuahuan desert is considered to be the most biological diverse deserts in the world.
  • The Sonoran desert has the most diverse plant life of any desert in the world.
  • The Mojave desert gets less than 6 inches of rain a year. It is home to the Joshua tree, a tree that is thought to live up to a 1,000 years.
  • The southwest has been to home to humans since around 900 BC, starting with the Clovis people. Many other Native Americans have called the region home for thousands of years.
  • There are more than 400 bird species that call this area home! Wowzers.
  • The area also is home to many snakes species.

 

We are excited to meet some of the inhabitants tomorrow! Who are you hoping to meet?

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: