Sometimes The Sky Calls…

Another night of unsatisfying sleep, my Inbox is full of e-mail awaiting responses, my household chores are steadily backing up. In light of all of this, I had decided that I would stay inside today and just post some remaining photos from yesterday’s walk. But… this morning I looked outside and it was cloudy. I cracked the front door and the weather was cool and breezy. Birds were singing… squirrels were zipping around… and, well, you know how it goes. I got dressed and put my shoes on. [insert sheepish grin] I figured I should at least grab a cup of juice before leaving and while gulping it down, I peered out the kitchen window. As if on cue, my favorite spotted-little-one showed up with its mom and gave me a glimpse or two as it snuck through the sage and olive trees.


mule deer fawn

There was a fair bit of blue sky showing, but the clouds that covered the rest of the sky more than made up for it. Wispy and whimsical. Puffs and arcs. Stretching, shifting and moving. Aaaah… action in the sky… just what I crave!


clouds sky trees

clouds sky hillside

cloud abstract


As if issuing some sort of homage to the little spotted fawn from earlier, the sky shifted yet again and produced this most wonderful pattern:


cloud abstract spots**Be sure to click on the image for a beautiful panoramic.**

A Cooper’s Hawk (quite likely the same one from yesterday!) soared effortlessly above me. Sharing the sky with the hawk were a few swallows swooping and diving at unseen insects. I heard the raucous croaking of the boisterous raven family long before I spotted them high over the hills. The juveniles are as big as the adults now and the family (6 birds total, I think) loudly travels together in search of food and perhaps a bit of mayhem.


Cooper's Hawk & Common Ravens


There were small arthropod joys to be had as well. Several bumble bees were working a patch of California Poppies. If yesterday’s photos were a matter of good luck and perfect timing, today’s images proved to be more a matter of supreme patience and diligence. For some reason, my camera repeatedly refused to achieve focus when I wanted it to, and countless opportunities for beautiful shots of the bees ended up as little more than blurry blobs of orange, yellow and black. But, it was a beautiful day to be out and I smiled despite my frustration, and stuck with it until I managed to come away with at least a few nifty shots.

bumble bees on poppiesI was kind of amazed at how long bumble bees’ back legs are when they let them dangle.


I knew I had been gone too long, and reluctantly I turned and headed for home. As I rounded the corner of the small work shed near our cabin, I slowed down to carefully watch my step and scan the ground… Why? Well, because there’s always the chance I’ll see this poking out of the abandoned ground squirrel burrow:


rattlesnake under shedIf you’ve got a heebie-jeebie-thing about rattlers, I wouldn’t click on this one for the bonus shot… (*grin*)

Hope everyone has had a truly wonderful day!

Harsi / June 1, 2011 / arthropods, birds, flowers, mammals, reptiles, skies


  1. Lisa - June 2, 2011 @ 6:30 am

    Hey there….sorry to hear that your night didn’t go well 🙁 . I have a great tip on how to fall asleep that I can e-mail you if you are interested…of course, I don’t know how to keep from waking up often if that is the case. GREAT pics again! Thanks also for the clever bonus pics. (I absolutely clicked on the last one too.) I love the “spotted clouds” thought too. I like the way you think :). xoxoxo

  2. Harsi - June 2, 2011 @ 9:47 am

    Mornin’ Ms. Songbird! Well.. I suppose it’s afternoon already for you. 🙂 I actually slept marginally better last night, so let’s hope this is the start of things improving. I would love to hear any tips you might have (e-mail them on over!), but yeah, the problem is mostly with waking-up repeatedly. Atta’ girl for clicking on the snake pic! Even my husband finds that eye of theirs a little spooky. I suppose I do too if I let myself imagine scary things like being trapped in a small space with one. But, as I’ve said many times before… they seem soooo non-agressive to me that I don’t feel there is much to fear if you have a clear line of sight and keep a respectful distance. Re: the spotted clouds. Glad you liked them. 🙂 I suppose I had “fawn on the brain” and was seeing spots everywhere that day. xo


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