79 Species in One Day, 04-08-23

After breakfast, I decided to take a walk over at the Effie Yeaw Nature Preserve. I hadn’t been over there for a while.

One of the first things I saw was a White-Breasted Nuthatch collecting materials for a nest she was building inside a manmade bird box. She was getting the majority of the nesting materials from the floor of a nearby play area. Some of the bits looked too big for her to get past the threshold of her box, and it was fun watching her figure out the geometry necessary to get the job done.

I saw a couple of other Nuthatches on other trails in the preserve. One pair was on a stump on the Meadow Trail, and the others were digging stuff out from under the bark on a tree on the Main Trail. So busy.

There were tiny House Wrens all over the place, singing away as they staked out territories and wooed potential mates. There were also lots of Acorn Woodpeckers, Audubon’s Warblers, and Tree Swallows around. I caught a glimpse of a Nuttall’s Woodpecker, and I heard California Quails and Red-Shouldered Hawks but couldn’t get photos of those. I love all the song in the air.

In the tall grass, I found quite a few “blossoming” Santa Barbara Sedge plants, arum, Bur Parsley, Blue Dicks and Wavy-Leafed Soap Plants, Greater Periwinkle, and Miner’s Lettuce. There were also Pipevine and Manroot vines, and some early emergence Valley Tassels. Everything was greening up or flowering.

CLICK HERE for the full album of photos.

Some of the oak trees were dripping with their catkins and growing new leaves. On one of the trees I found a few galls made by the bisexual, springtime Two-Horned Gall Wasp. This wasp has two generations, both on the live oak trees. The springtime generation galls look like dark horny shells on the catkins or new leaves, and the summer generation galls look like little barrels with a horn on each end. Oddly, I usually find far more of the summer galls than the springtime ones.

I also found specimens of both Giraffe’s Head Henbit and Red Deadnettle, plants that look somewhat similar but are actually different species. The Red Deadnettle has a reddish blush on its top leaves which the Giraffe’s Head lacks, and the leaves have a different shape.

There were quite a few deer out and about. In one spot, I saw 13 of them spread over both sides of the trail. One of the yearlings had a very light, almost blond, coat. It will be interesting to see if he retains that coloring as he gets older.

There had been warnings of a lot of ticks on the preserve, but I got out without a single one on me. In the creepy-but-cool insect realm, however, I did come across a Jerusalem Cricket…which aren’t crickets and don’t come from Jerusalem.

I walked and walked and covered three of the trails on the preserve, pushed forward by seeing so many species. But I was out for over 5 hours, and that’s waaaaay past my limit. I was so exhausted that even when I got to the picnic area near the front of the preserve and could see my vehicle in the adjacent parking lot, it took me over half an hour to get to my car — and I had to sit down four times.

I felt exceedingly weak, dizzy and nauseated, and every light-colored thing seemed to “glow”, blooming bright white in my eyes. I really thought I was going to faint, but I eventually made it to the car and collapsed in the front seat. I sat for a few minutes letting the air conditioner blow on me and drinking some green tea with honey.

When I got home, my sister Melissa was in the garage doing laundry, and she helped me into the house, I could hardly walk by myself, even with my cane. I’m assuming I was suffering the effects of overexertion.

“…We all know that exercise is a great way to take care of both our body and mind. However, it’s important to make sure you aren’t overdoing it…Make sure you’re listening to your body and being aware of your own limitations…” Sun Health Communities

I just over-did the walk. Gotta set strict time limits on myself, and pay better attention to how my body is feeling.

This was walk #16 of my #52HikeChallenge for the year.

Species List:

  1. Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus
  2. American Robin, Turdus migratorius
  3. Annual Agoseris, Agoseris heterophylla [like tiny Cat’s Ear]
  4. Ant, American Winter Ant, Prenolepis imparis
  5. Ash, Oregon Ash, Fraxinus latifolia
  6. Audubon’s Warbler, Yellow-Rumped Warbler, Setophaga coronata auduboni
  7. Bedstraw, Catchweed Bedstraw, Velcro Grass, Galium aparine
  8. Bee, European Honeybee, Western Honeybee, Apis mellifera
  9. Black Phoebe, Sayornis nigricans
  10. Black Walnut, Eastern Black Walnut, Juglans nigra
  11. Blessed Milk Thistle, Silybum marianum
  12. Blue Dicks, Dipterostemon capitatus ssp. capitatus
  13. Blue Elderberry, Sambucus nigra cerulea
  14. Bur Parsley, Anthriscus caucalis
  15. Bushtit, American Bushtit, Psaltriparus minimus
  16. California Ground Squirrel, Otospermophilus beecheyi
  17. California Mugwort, Artemisia douglasiana
  18. California Pipevine Swallowtail Butterfly, Battus philenor hirsuta
  19. California Pipevine, Dutchman’s Pipe, Aristolochia californica
  20. California Quail, Callipepla californica [heard]
  21. California Scrub Jay, Aphelocoma californica
  22. Canada Goose, Branta canadensis [fly over]
  23. Columbian Black-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus hemionus columbianus
  24. Common Chickweed, Stellaria media
  25. Common Groundsel, Senecio vulgaris [like little dandelions on a stem]
  26. Coyote Brush, Baccharis pilularis
  27. Creeping Snowberry, Symphoricarpos mollis
  28. Cumberland Rock Shield Lichen, Xanthoparmelia cumberlandia
  29. Eastern Fox Squirrel, Sciurus niger [rusty belly]
  30. Erodium, Musk Stork’s-Bill, Erodium moschatum
  31. European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris
  32. Fiddleneck, Common Fiddleneck, Amsinckia menziesii
  33. Fremont’s Cottonwood, Populus fremontii
  34. Giraffe’s Head, Henbit Deadnettle, Lamium amplexicaule
  35. Great Blue Heron, Ardea herodias [flying along the river side]
  36. Great Egret, Ardea alba
  37. Green Shield Lichen, Flavoparmelia caperata
  38. Ichneumon Wasp, Odontocolon sp.
  39. Italian Arum, Lords-and-Ladies, Arum italicum
  40. Jerusalem Cricket, North American Jerusalem Cricket, Ammopelmatus sp.
  41. Lupine, Bush Lupine, Silver Lupine, Lupinus albifrons var. albifrons
  42. Lupine, Miniature Lupine, Lupinus bicolor
  43. Manroot, California Manroot, Bigroot, Marah fabaceus
  44. Miner’s Lettuce, Claytonia perfoliate
  45. Mirid Bug, Irbisia sp.
  46. Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura
  47. Northern Flicker, Colaptes auratus
  48. Nuttall’s Woodpecker, Picoides nuttallii
  49. Oak Titmouse, Baeolophus inornatus
  50. Oak, Coast Live Oak, Quercus agrifolia
  51. Oak, Interior Live Oak, Quercus wislizeni
  52. Oak, Valley Oak, Quercus lobata
  53. Oakmoss Lichen, Evernia prunastri [like strap but with soredia]
  54. Olive, Olea europaea
  55. Periwinkle, Greater Periwinkle, Vinca major
  56. Poison Oak, Pacific Poison Oak, Western Poison Oak, Toxicodendron diversilobum
  57. Red Deadnettle, Lamium purpureum
  58. Red-Shouldered Hawk, California Red-Shouldered Hawk, Buteo lineatus elegans
  59. Rio Grande Wild Turkey, Meleagris gallopavo intermedia
  60. Santa Barbara Sedge, Carex barbarae
  61. Shepherd’s-Purse, Capsella bursa-pastoris
  62. Sonoma Sage, Salvia sonomensis [purple, lacy]
  63. Sparrow, Golden-Crowned Sparrow, Zonotrichia atricapilla
  64. Sticky Mouse Ears Chickweed, Cerastium glomeratum
  65. Stonecrop, Moss Pygmy Weed, Crassula connata [tiny, red]
  66. Swallow, Tree Swallow, Tachycineta bicolor
  67. Towhee, California Towhee, Melozone crissalis
  68. Trailing Blackberry, Rubus ursinus [white/green stems]
  69. Turkey Vulture, Cathartes aura
  70. Two-Horned Gall Wasp, Bisexual, spring generation, Dryocosmus dubiosus [hard, shell-like on catkins ad new leaves on live oak]
  71. Valley Tassels, Castilleja attenuata
  72. Vetch, Common Vetch, Vicia sativa
  73. Wavy-Leafed Soap Plant, Chlorogalum pomeridianum
  74. Western Gray Squirrel, Sciurus griseus
  75. Western Redbud, Cercis occidentalis
  76. White Horehound, Marrubium vulgare
  77. White-Breasted Nuthatch, Sitta carolinensis
  78. Wren, House Wren, Troglodytes aedon
  79. Yarrow, Common Yarrow, Achillea millefolium

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