Friday, March 25, 2011

Hopping to admire the camouflage

"Hopping" is a pun on the title of my previous camouflage post (stopping to admire camouflage), and appropriate, as this time I'm celebrating a  frog (or toad -- identification pending). Here he is on a rock of granite that creates a natural pond referred to in my region as a tenaja.

The canyon I visit can be accessed by hopping from rock to rock -- no pun intended. Crawling through the banks puts you in tangles of underbrush which include poisen oak. Along with the camouflage of animals, I also admire the tenacity of plants that cling to the stream bed:

Above: a California sycamore with most of its root base exposed. The tree still lives, as it tendrils reach down into the bed. Notice the rock it's cradling (about mid center); I wonder how long the exposed roots have been holding this stone.

Above: a more complete view of the same tree.

Above: Another tree with an apparent tenuous hold on the bank.

Above: I believe this one to be a willow, quite thrashed by the winter rains (we have no snow melt here -- mediterranian climate -- most of our rain fall in the winter and spring months). It's leaves haven't sprouted yet. The green behind it is from a poisen oak.

Above: A velvet ant observed away from the stream.These are about the size of a honeybee and are definitely not camouflaged.

Above: one more look at the frog that inspired this post.


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