Friday, February 26, 2016

A Walk With Dad

My dear dad and I went for a walk at the Gilbert Riparian Preserve this morning.

I wore this . . . 
shirt: from Ross
pants: Style & Co from Macy's
purse, socks, shoes: Target

Plus this hat!
hat from Ross

Dad made sure to spray on his sunscreen:

This little water gatherer had fish etched on the side!

With an appropriate license, a person could fish
(I don't like fishing, but I like knowing there are fish in the ponds!)

The plants were starting to bloom, especially the Globe Mallow: 

 Look at this cute little guy!

And this silly guy has a fancy head plume!

Orange Globe mallow blooming: 

The park has an observatory and they have astronomy nights.
I want to go sometime!

We found a little stream.

But it was still the desert!

This tree had LOTS of nests! 

Tiny hummingbird:

I think this might be a young mockingbird . . .  

I'm quite impressed with my camera on this expedition! 

This is as close as you'd want to get to snuggling a cactus. 

More beautiful Globe Mallow: 

The Gilbert library is right there, overlooking the pond.  Pretty! 

This tree had grown into a strange hoop: 

My friend Cindy told me that Jojoba has leaves that look as if they're stuck on sideways.
She's right! 

Protected holes for burrowing owls: 

Curved bill thrasher? 

Another one?

The tippy tops of the branches were beginning to leaf.

Dad showed me a Bee Bush.

Pretty little flowers!

Here's why it's called a Bee Bush:

 This tree's branches are weird and cool.
They all go straight up!

And look what we saw!!!
 He appears to be some sort of kite (a bird of prey),
but I haven't been able to identify him because he has those cool
vertical stripes on his beautiful face.

I love his little snub nose!

This pool had water in it, but it wasn't deep, 
so lots of wading birds chose to hang out there.

And raccoons!

These stands are for the birds of prey;
they like to sit up high and watch the little scurrying animals
like scoping out the buffet! 

We saw lots of rabbits! 

Fluffy rabbit butt! 

This little spotted berry was eye-catching.
 After quite a bit of research, I believe it's a Wolfberry bush.
Apparently, the berries are edible and taste like a tiny tart tomato!

And the flowers are pretty.
Perhaps I need to plant some - I could add wolfberries to my salads! 
Plus, butterflies, birds, and bees like them, so it would a plus for my creature-watching habits.

We saw plenty of creatures on this walk.
Because there is water in the park and lots of shade, we saw more animals than I would normally see on a walk in the desert. 

Gila Woodpecker sounds:

Some cute little quail running across the path:

And here's where the water comes from . . .

it's being cleaned up so it can be reused.
It's already gone through lots of steps, and this is one of the last steps.
It's safe for the animals by this point but not good for us to drink yet. 

We even saw an Eagle!

The little hummingbirds we saw were Costa's Hummingbirds.

Here's a Black-Necked Stilt!
They are very cute! 

This is likely a Cormorant.

Here's a Baja Fairy Duster!

Bees like them. 

And they're beautiful! 

The park has lots of fun walls and structures for kids to climb on: 

And a GOOSE! 

Thanks, Dad!
It was a wonderful day!