Tag Archives: Wolf’s Milk slime mold

Wren Housekeeping and Slime Molds, 05-21-19

I got up a little before 6:00 am and headed over to the Effie Yeaw Nature Preserve for my regular Tuesday trail-walking gig.  It was cool and rain threatened, but it didn’t actually start raining until I got back into the car to head home, so that was nice.  I was joined on the walk by Mary Messenger (The Other Mary), and we took the trails in a counterclockwise fashion just to mix things up a little bit. I was hoping to see the young coyote again, but I didn’t.  Later, Rachel (the volunteer coordinator) told us that she’d spotted it in the company of a larger coyote in the big field right before the turn off to the nature center.  She suspected it was too-lean female, but I think it’s a juvenile.  Hard to tell, though, unless we can get a really good look at it.

CLICK HERE for the album of photos.

I did get to see couple of slime molds, which was cool, and also got to watch House Wrens doing their daily chores: bringing twigs and feathers to line their nesting cavity; bringing breakfast to the kids; and taking out the trash (taking the babies’ fecal sacs out of the nest).  We also got photos of a cooperative Desert Cottontail rabbit who was eating clover along the edge of the trail.  So cute.

We walked for about 3 ½ hours and then head back home.

Species List:

  1. Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus,
  2. American Bullfrog, Lithobates catesbeianus,
  3. Anna’s Hummingbird, Calypte anna,
  4. Ash-Throated Flycatcher, Myiarchus cinerascens,
  5. Black Jelly Roll fungus, Exidia glandulosa,
  6. Black Phoebe, Sayornis nigricans,
  7. Black Walnut, Juglans nigra,
  8. Blessed Milk Thistle, Silybum marianum,
  9. Blue Elderberry, Sambucus cerulea,
  10. Bryum Moss, Bryum capillare,
  11. Bush Katydid, Scudderia furcata,
  12. California Ground Squirrel, Otospermophilus beecheyi,
  13. California Pipevine Swallowtail, Battus philenor hirsuta,
  14. California Pipevine, Dutchman’s Pipe, Aristolochia californica,
  15. California Scrub Jay, Aphelocoma californica,
  16. California Towhee, Melozone crissalis,
  17. California Wild Grape, Vitis californica,
  18. Canada Goose, Branta canadensis,
  19. Columbian Black-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus hemionus columbianus,
  20. Desert Cottontail, Sylvilagus audubonii,
  21. Eastern Fox Squirrel, Sciurus niger,
  22. Eastern Phoebe, Sayornis phoebe,
  23. English Walnut, Juglans regia,
  24. European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris,
  25. Gold Dust Lichen, Chrysothrix candelaris,
  26. Green Shield Lichen, Flavoparmelia caperata,
  27. Hammond’s Flycatcher, Empidonax hammondii
  28. Honey Fungus, Ringless Honey Fungus, Armarilla tabescens,
  29. House Wren, Troglodytes aedon,
  30. Jelly Spot Jelly Fungus, Dacrymyces chrysospermus,
  31. Mallard, Anas platyrhynchos,
  32. Miniature Lupine, Lupinus bicolor,
  33. Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura,
  34. Mower’s Mushroom, Haymaker Mushroom, Panaeolus foenisecii,
  35. Nuttall’s Woodpecker, Picoides nuttallii,
  36. Painted Lady Butterfly, Vanessa cardui,
  37. Poison Oak, Pacific Poison Oak, Toxicodendron diversilobum,
  38. Rock Shield Lichen, Xanthoparmelia conspersa,
  39. Showy Milkweed, Asclepias speciose,
  40. Split Gill Fungus, Schizophyllum sp.
  41. Tree Swallow, Tachycineta bicolor,
  42. White Finger Slime Mold, Ceratiomyxa fruticulosa,
  43. White Horehound, Marrubium vulgare,
  44. Witches Butter Jelly Fungus, Tremella mesenterica,
  45. Wolf’s Milk Slime Mold, Lycogala epidendrum,
  46. Wrinkled Crust Fungus, Phlebia radiata

Found New Kind of Slime Mold

Mule Deer Fawn. © 2016 Mary K. Hanson. All rights reserved.
Mule Deer Fawn. © 2016 Mary K. Hanson. All rights reserved.

I’m still feeling a bit crappy — fighting a cough and cold bug — but I was also getting a little stir crazy just laying around the house, so I got up around 7:00 am and headed over to the American River Bend Park for a walk and some fresh air.

I was looking for helvellas and coral fungi, and found the helvellas (commonly called Elfin Saddles) but no coral fungus yet.   It’s a little bit rare out there, but I always keep an eye out for it.  Lots of other mushrooms and different kinds of jellies were out today, though.  There was one tree that was so loaded with the orange Witch’s Butter jelly fungus that it was practically “glowing”.  I could see it from yards away…  Along the river’s edge I saw a couple of seagulls and as I approached, I noticed there was a Great Blue Heron standing near the shore, eyeballing the gulls.  I’m not too overly fond of taking seagull photos (because they’re so… “ubiquitous”) but I really liked the fact that the heron was so close.  I got quite a few photos of him, and a little video too when it tried to approach one of the gulls and steal its snack from it.

In the woods, I came across two does sheltering a young fawn.  One of the does looked pregnant to me.  And elsewhere, as I was driving out of the park, I came across a troop of bucks (about 5 of them) of varying ages.  I came up on them so suddenly, and they were moving at a pretty good pace, so I had to shoot video through the car windows of them before they disappeared into the thicket.  They’re always such a treat to see.  And two of them were jousting a little bit.  I also got to see a Red-Breasted Sap Sucker and a Nutthall’s Woodpecker…

When I drive into and out of the park, I always go extra slowly, so I don’t run over or into and critters, and so I can watch for cool stuff among the trees from the road.  Today, I saw something large and bright pink on the side of a fallen limb.  Because of its color, I assumed it was some kind of slime mold, but I’d never seen a pink mass that large before, so I had to go check it out.  I pulled the car off the road in the nearest turnout and walked back to the limb…  And sure enough, it was a kind of slime mold I’d never seen before: Red Raspberry Slime Mold, Enteridium splendens.  It looked like big lumps of whipped up raspberry yogurt, but felt firm and rubbery to the touch.

So the trip was fun, but I think I over-did it.  By the time I got home, I was coughing more and aching all over.  So much for trying to get better, huh?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.