After a slow first five months, I'm back to blogging in earnest. In the forthcoming few months I plan to keep on tracking the blooming of wildflowers, the activities of bugs and reptiles and any other critters I'm quick enough or lucky enough to photograph, and to comment on ecological relationships. Since there is an increasing sense of ecological crisis among many people and more vigorous denial of such on the part of others, I will inevitably comment on the social and political dimensions of survival as I see them.
I am still an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Feather River College, but time permitting, I am available for hire as a nature guide in the region in and around Plumas County. A brochure describing my usual kinds of natural history adventures is in development. Email me c/o firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing address and a statement of interests, and I'll send you a rough draft.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
I'm wondering if my gathering of photos as evidence of drought has caused it to rain. It is now raining. Just in case, I think I'll keep on posting my drought photos. We need rain! The above hoto is of a couple of young Umbrella Plants, formerly known as Indian Rhubarb. These flowering stems usually get at least 18 - 24" tall before producing clumps of flower buds. This year I'm seeing fewer starts, and the ones I'm seeing are covered with flower buds when less than a foot tall.
A pant that seems pretty hardy in this drought is the Dusky Horkelia. I enjoyed watching the Hover Fly visit. It seldom landed, but even when it did land, it never stopped beating its wings.
The California Buttercups seem to be doing fine both in open fields and in rocky crevices as is the case with the above clump. This same rocky crevice is one of my favorite spots to photograph the Narrow-leaf Milkweed and its interesting, season-long sequence of insect and arachnid visitors. On this particular day, the milkweeds had barely broken ground. It's too early too see any obvious effects of the drought. In fact, this week's rains might be sufficient for this drought-tolerant species to have a normal year.