I got up around 5:45 this morning and headed out to the Gristmill Recreation Area for a walk. It was 56° at the river when I got there. Again, I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, so I was open to whatever I came across. I walked along the shore of the American River for a while then climbed up onto the trail to walk back to where the car was parked.
I found quite a few little toadlets in one area. There must be a nursery of them in there somewhere, but the riverside plants were too overgrown for me to see exactly where they coming from.
I also found a melanistic Bull Frog. It was a young one and kind of skinny, and because it was still a little chilly outside, the frog was torpid. That made it easy for me to catch him and get some photos of him.
CLICK HERE for the full album of photos.
There were lots of galls on the willow trees, but nothing much, really, showing on the oaks there yet.
I saw a Great Blue Heron on the edge of the water, slumming with some Canada Geese. It let me get pretty close before it flew off, croaking at me. A male Belted Kingfisher was also cooperative, sitting on a snag by the water drying off from fishing. And a young Red-Shouldered Hawk flew into a tree right near the trail, and let me get some photos of it before it also took off across the river.
I walked for about 2 hours and then headed home.
- Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus
- African Cluster Bug, Agonoscelis puberula
- American Bull Frog, Lithobates catesbeianus
- Anna’s Hummingbird, Calypte anna
- Armenian Blackberry, Rubus armeniacus [pink flower]
- Arroyo Willow, Salix lasiolepis
- Belted Kingfisher, Megaceryle alcyon
- Black Walnut Pouch Gall Mite, Aceria brachytarsa
- Black Walnut, Eastern Black Walnut, Juglans nigra
- Black-Tailed Jackrabbit, Lepus californicus
- Blue Elderberry, Sambucus nigra cerulea
- Boxelder, Box Elder Tree, Acer negundo
- California Ground Squirrel, Otospermophilus beecheyi
- California Gull, Larus californicus [yellow legs; dark eye; red spot]
- California Mugwort, Artemisia douglasiana
- California Towhee, Melozone crissalis
- Canada Goose, Branta canadensis
- Coast Live Oak, Quercus agrifolia
- Common Merganser, Mergus merganser
- Crow, American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos
- Desert Cottontail Rabbit, Sylvilagus audubonii
- Doveweed, Turkey Mullein, Croton setiger
- European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris
- Fremont’s Cottonwood, Populus fremontii
- Goodding’s Black Willow, Salix gooddingii
- Great Blue Heron, Ardea herodias
- Hairy Woodpecker, Dryobates villosus [long bill]
- Interior Live Oak, Quercus wislizeni
- Interior Sandbar Willow, Salix interior
- Mallard Duck, Anas platyrhynchos
- Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura
- Mullein, Great Mullein, Verbascum thapsus
- Mullein, Moth Mullein, Verbascum blattaria [thin stick, white or yellow]
- Muscovy Duck, Cairina moschata
- Northern Catalpa, Indian Bean Tree, Catalpa speciosa
- Oak Apple, California Gall Wasp, Andricus quercuscalifornicus
- Red-Shouldered Hawk, Buteo lineatus
- Silver Maple, Acer saccharinum
- Smooth Horsetail, Equisetum laevigatum
- Spanish Clover, Acmispon americanus
- Spotted Towhee, Pipilo maculatus
- Tall Flatsedge, Cyperus eragrostis
- Valley Oak, Quercus lobata
- Western Boxelder Bug, Boisea rubrolineata
- Western Toad, Anaxyrus boreas
- White Horehound, Marrubium vulgare
- Willow Apple Gall Sawfly, Pontania californica
- Willow Bead Gall Mite, Aculus tetanothrix
- Willow Beaked Twig Gall Midge, Rahdophaga rigidae
- Willow Mid-Rib Sawfly, Unknown species [per Russo, pg.219]
- Willow Rosette Gall Midge, Rabdophaga salicisbrassicoides
- Willow Stem Sawfly, Euura exiguae
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