Tag Archives: Rio Grande

After the Fires

This would normally be a Wordless Wednesday post, but today I have something to say about what has happened in my beautiful state.

This weekend Bosque Bill and I went down the Calabacillas Arroyo access to the Rio Grande to see what was happening there in light of the monsoon rains that have occurred following the La Concha and Pacheco fires earlier this year.

It was a beautiful morning, and we enjoyed looking at the flowers …

Goldenrod

Goldenrod

Hyssop Lily

Hyssop Lily

Globe Mallow

Globe Mallow

Bee Plant

Bee Plant

Blue Flax

Blue Flax

… and the dragonflies and damselflies on the walk down to the river. I am not at all confident in my ability to identify dragonflies and damselflies. Please feel free to correct any mis-identifications.

Variegated Meadowhawk

Variegated Meadowhawk

Blue Dasher

Blue Dasher

Aztec Dancer (male)

Aztec Dancer (male)

Aztec Dancer (female)

Aztec Dancer (female)

Powdered Dancer

Powdered Dancer

We walked down to the Rio to enjoy the beautiful view of the river and the Sandias.

Rio Grande and clouds over the Sandias.

Rio Grande and clouds over the Sandias.

We watched Snowy Egrets flying overhead.

Snowy Egret

Snowy Egret

And what does all of this have to do with the devastating New Mexico fires?

When we got to the edge of the river, we could see that the river was dark gray with ash from runoff from the burn areas. There was a great deal of black ash along the edge of the water.

Ash in the Rio Grande from runoff after the La Concha and Pacheco fires.

Ash in the Rio Grande from runoff after the La Concha and Pacheco fires.

There were chunks of burned Ponderosa Pine floating in the Rio.

Charred Ponderosa Pine bark.

Charred Ponderosa Pine bark.

John Fleck of the Albuquerque Journal has written a blog post about how a fire affects an entire watershed. The damage from the fires and the subsequent flooding has devastated many beautiful areas in New Mexico including the Santa Clara Pueblo, Bandelier National Monument, Valles Caldera National Preserve and Dixon’s Apple Orchard. Many important birding and wildlife areas were burned. It will take many years for these areas to recover.

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Filed under Damselflies, Dragonflies, Flowers, New Mexico birds

Tuesday Turtles

I recently stopped by the Rio Grande Nature Center In Albuquerque, New Mexico to see what was going on there. I enjoyed the Red-eared Sliders and Painted Turtles basking in the sun at the Visitor’s Center pond.

Red-eared Sliders at the Rio Grande Nature Center

Red-eared Sliders at the Rio Grande Nature Center


Red-eared Sliders at the Rio Grande Nature Center

Red-eared Sliders at the Rio Grande Nature Center

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An Insect Kind of Sunday in the Corrales Bosque

I really meant to ride my bike to the Corrales Harvest Festival when I got up on Sunday morning. Somehow the idea of crowds and noise did not appeal to me, so I went for a short fast ride, came home and decided to take some bird photos in the Corrales Bosque. I saw quite a few birds, but the insects were so abundant and lovely that I decided to photograph them.

The Figeater Beetles (a type of Scarab Beetle) were everywhere, flying right at me in their clumsy, bumblebee-like manner.

Figeater Beetle

Figeater Beetle

Figeather Beetle and Smaller Beetles Eating Tree Sap

Figeather Beetle and Smaller Beetles Eating Tree Sap

There were many dragonflies, spreadwings and damselflies.

Flame Skimmer

Flame Skimmer

Great Spreadwing

Great Spreadwing

Great Spreadwing, Another View

Great Spreadwing, Another View

Familiar Bluet

Familiar Bluet

I was able to identify the various species of odonata from Bosque Bill’s excellent website.

Honeybees were going about their business on the abundant wildflowers.

Honeybee on Wildflower

Honeybee on Wildflower

There were many small butterflies on the wildflowers too.

Cabbage White Butterfly on Wild Purple Aster

Cabbage White Butterfly on Wild Purple Aster

Clouded Sulphur Butterfly on Small-flowered White Aster

Clouded Sulphur Butterfly on Small-flowered White Aster

Some days you find birds, some days you find insects, some days you find both. It’s always lovely to walk in the Corrales Bosque.

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Filed under Beetles, Butterflies, Damselflies, Dragonflies, Insects, Odonata, Wildflowers

A Sunday Bike Ride in the Bosque

It was a beautiful weekend in New Mexico. I went for a bike ride on both Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday I forgot to take my camera with me, but I remembered it on Sunday. These photos were taken with a little Canon point-and-shoot that fits in my biking jersey pocket.

After I had finished my serious riding I detoured into the Aldo Leopold Forest Area near the Rio Grande Nature Center. There were many Wilson’s Warblers in the trees near the river and I saw a Green-tailed Towhee in the underbrush, but my little camera was not up to the task of photographing small, active birds. Fortunately this Western Fence Lizard posed for me on an old fallen cottonwood.

Western Fence Lizard


Western Fence Lizard, Another Look


Afterwards I walked through the Rio Grande Nature Center where I saw turtles, Mallards and Canada Geese at the Nature Center blind.

Turtles and a Mallard, Rio Grande Nature Center


There were quite a few Black-chinned Hummingbirds at the Nature Center feeders. I was very happy to be able to get a few decent images with the point and shoot.

Black-chinned Hummingbirds, Rio Grande Nature Center


Female Black-chinned Hummingbird, Rio Grande Nature Center


As I rode back along Rio Grande Boulevard I saw literally thousands of little yellow Clouded Sulphur butterflies in an alfalfa field.

Clouded Sulphur Butterfly


The sight of all the little butterflies was so lovely that I took a slightly shaky point-and-shoot video of them.

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Filed under Albuquerque birds, Butterflies, Lizards, Turtles

Wandering Wednesday-A Bike Ride in the Rio Grande Bosque

On Sunday morning I set off for a bike ride in the Rio Grande Bosque. It was a lovely day, and I took some photos with my little point and shoot camera.





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Filed under Albuquerque birds, Butterflies, Flowers, Lizards, Scenery