Happy Fourth. I went out to the Cosumnes River Preserve for a walk and was disappointed to see most of the water now gone from the slough by the boardwalk paring lot. That was the only “wet” left in the wetlands area – and animals that depend on that water don’t have ready access to it anywhere else.
Anyway, I hung around the slough for a while to look for early summer galls and insects, and while I waited I did get to see a few birds. Belted Kingfishers are like my “nemesis” birds. I’ve spent YEARS trying to get a halfway decent photo of one of them. They’re super-fast and super shy… So, I was overjoyed when this female stopped on a tree across the slough from me and posed for a while. I also saw a Green Heron who was “caw-honking” to another one across the road from it: call and response. I’d never heard that from this species before, although I’m sure they do it all the time, so that was cool, too.
CLICK HERE to see the full album of photos.
Bushtits, several Great Egrets and Snowy Egrets, Killdeer, and some Tree Swallows were among the other birds that came by. I also saw the head of a Red-Eared Slider Turtle and a Western Pond Turtle poke up from the shallow water at different intervals.
As for the galls, I saw some Oak Apple wasp galls, Ash Flower galls, Spiny Turbans and a few Round Wasp galls. It’s really too early in the season for most of them. Another month and different species should be popping up all over the place.
When I was done walking at the slough, I drove up the road to the nature center and just walked the boat ramp walk there. Lots of people taking their kayaks down to the river, but not a lot of critters or bugs. I was hoping to see some dragonflies and damselflies, but no such luck. I did get to see a little Trashline Spider, though, and a gorgeous male American Goldfinch.
I was out for about 3 hours and headed back home.