At last I was able to take a photo of a bee gathering pollen from the native Woolly Blue Curls Trichostema lanatum growing in our native patch. The scent of the blossoms is like grape soda. I can understand the attraction. Here is an Ivory Banded Digger Bee gathering pollen. You can see the blue pollen on the bee's pollen basket on its leg. It was another very breezy day, and these bees dart around quickly. So these are lucky shots of the bee in action.
What a delight it is to discover native wildflowers in different parts of the front yard! Late last autumn I sprinkled native wildflower seeds in bare areas of the native patches, hoping that somehow we'd have adequate winter rains to help the seeds germinate. We did receive some winter and spring rain, but then a gopher made its way to our front yard and proceeded to burrow through, creating 30 holes. Although the critter didn't destroy any of our plants, while creating hole
Click on this link on Birdcast to follow bird migration currently happening in North America. These real-time analysis maps show intensities of actual nocturnal bird migration as detected by the US weather surveillance radar network between local sunset to sunrise. These maps are produced by the Cornell Institute of Ornithology. https://birdcast.info/migration-tools/live-migration-maps/
Today is the first time I observed a Wool Carder bee visiting the plants around the patio. After some hours of welcome rain in the early morning hours, the bees were out and about. Carpenter bees, digger bees and this little wool carder bee kept chasing each other away from this very popular nectar source.
Ever since the delightful Birds Eye aka Tricolored Gilia began to pop up in the native garden, I've been waiting for the mining bee Andrena cerasifolii (male) and Andrena Subtilis (female) visitors. Although these bees are most often found on Ceanothus and occasionally on salvia plants, the only time I ever see the males is during this time of year, when they visit the gilias. I took these photos yesterday of what I think is a male Andrena cerasifolii yesterday in the native
Just when I was afraid that the cedar waxwings weren't returning this year, they reassured me with their presence. With the sound like a soft breeze, they fly in a flock of at least fifty birds from tree to tree. In the top photo some of them are resting on a neighbor's very tall juniper tree. Feasting on berries in a group of juniper trees. Four of the waxwings huddled together on a branch of another neighbor's magnolia tree. From the magnolia tree they flew to the redwood t
North American birds are in decline. Here are 8 simple ways to help them: https://www.npr.org/2022/04/13/1092678564/north-american-birds-are-in-decline-here-are-8-simple-ways-you-can-help?fbclid=IwAR11LIFpY17FL-ISgJ5_zZz1C_THCzc-NM3fJGTJGox_uN6mi_WoOBw9J6o
Now that the Blue Bush Lupine is blooming, bees visit it all day. It is an excellent nectar source for hummingbirds and bees. Here, the Ivory Banded Digger Bee approaches the plant with its proboscis ready for a drink. The orange color on its leg is pollen. An Ivory Banded Digger Bee collecting pollen from a flower head on a native Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Skylark'. This plant is growing in a large pot on the patio, since it is a compact plant. It can grow up to 4 or 5 feet ta
Photo by Toni Genberg A great article by Tyler Wells Lynch https://www.yesmagazine.org/environment/2020/02/07/yard-sustainability-native-plants?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=YESDaily_%2020220410&utm_content=YESDaily_%2020220410%20CID_82e38896c6f67c7d0776c8858d76d8e2&utm_source=CM&utm_term=How%20to%20Turn%20Your%20Yard%20Into%20an%20Ecological%20Oasis&fbclid=IwAR3eIiEZFoxf9BhMdIgqYEpn6tPh0jfgg6uiA9Db_86v-mF1C7kJ0cCcEh0
Well, that didn't take long. I took this photo a couple of days, just a day or two after I took the photos in the previous post of the house finches gathering twigs and dried grass for their nest. The female house finch is usually sitting in the nest now, but sometimes is away finding sustenance for herself. Incubation of the eggs, done by the female, takes about 14 days.