Saturday, May 14, 2011
A Patagonia Experience
I purposely called this post A Patagonia Experience rather than The Patagonia Experience as the advertising people might have called it. First of all, I'm not talking about a region in Argentina, but rather my wife's favorite clothing and outdoor gear store in Reno. My experience was quite different than hers. I didn't go inside. Instead, I decided to explore the natural-looking landscaping by the parking lot and photograph "wild" flowers. After photographing two I didn't recognize plus a group of California Poppies, I heard Killdeer screeching nearby. I recognized the panic in their voices, so I thought I might have come too close to a nest. I approached the sound carefully and spotted an adult and several fledglings. Then the excitement began. I slowly followed one of the adults as she trotted away from the site while performing her feigned broken wing dance. She hopped along the ground and up onto a series of big boulders until she led me far enough away from her babies that she felt justified in flying away. I could see her circling around the parking lot and returning to her babies, but I didn't follow her this time. The photos are posted here in the order I took them. First, the three flowers, then my first sighting of an adult Killdeer, then the dance. Click on each photo for a close-up. A beautiful bird with a great adaptation.