Two Hours at Gristmill, 07-14-21

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.

Species List:

  1. Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus
  2. African Cluster Bug, Agonoscelis puberula
  3. American Bull Frog, Lithobates catesbeianus
  4. Anna’s Hummingbird, Calypte anna
  5. Armenian Blackberry, Rubus armeniacus [pink flower]
  6. Arroyo Willow, Salix lasiolepis
  7. Belted Kingfisher, Megaceryle alcyon
  8. Black Walnut Pouch Gall Mite, Aceria brachytarsa
  9. Black Walnut, Eastern Black Walnut, Juglans nigra
  10. Black-Tailed Jackrabbit, Lepus californicus
  11. Blue Elderberry, Sambucus nigra cerulea
  12. Boxelder, Box Elder Tree, Acer negundo
  13. California Ground Squirrel, Otospermophilus beecheyi
  14. California Gull, Larus californicus [yellow legs; dark eye; red spot]
  15. California Mugwort, Artemisia douglasiana
  16. California Towhee, Melozone crissalis
  17. Canada Goose, Branta canadensis
  18. Coast Live Oak, Quercus agrifolia
  19. Common Merganser, Mergus merganser
  20. Crow, American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos
  21. Desert Cottontail Rabbit, Sylvilagus audubonii
  22. Doveweed, Turkey Mullein, Croton setiger
  23. European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris
  24. Fremont’s Cottonwood, Populus fremontii
  25. Goodding’s Black Willow, Salix gooddingii
  26. Great Blue Heron, Ardea herodias
  27. Hairy Woodpecker, Dryobates villosus [long bill]
  28. Interior Live Oak, Quercus wislizeni
  29. Interior Sandbar Willow, Salix interior
  30. Mallard Duck, Anas platyrhynchos
  31. Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura
  32. Mullein, Great Mullein, Verbascum thapsus
  33. Mullein, Moth Mullein, Verbascum blattaria [thin stick, white or yellow]
  34. Muscovy Duck, Cairina moschata
  35. Northern Catalpa, Indian Bean Tree, Catalpa speciosa
  36. Oak Apple, California Gall Wasp, Andricus quercuscalifornicus
  37. Red-Shouldered Hawk, Buteo lineatus
  38. Silver Maple, Acer saccharinum
  39. Smooth Horsetail, Equisetum laevigatum
  40. Spanish Clover, Acmispon americanus
  41. Spotted Towhee, Pipilo maculatus
  42. Tall Flatsedge, Cyperus eragrostis
  43. Valley Oak, Quercus lobata
  44. Western Boxelder Bug, Boisea rubrolineata
  45. Western Toad, Anaxyrus boreas
  46. White Horehound, Marrubium vulgare
  47. Willow Apple Gall Sawfly, Pontania californica
  48. Willow Bead Gall Mite, Aculus tetanothrix
  49. Willow Beaked Twig Gall Midge, Rahdophaga rigidae
  50. Willow Mid-Rib Sawfly, Unknown species [per Russo, pg.219]
  51. Willow Rosette Gall Midge, Rabdophaga salicisbrassicoides
  52. Willow Stem Sawfly, Euura exiguae