February 22, 2024

Monterey Audubon - Bushtits

How to photograph Bushtits: Find a Bushtit, which generally means finding many Bushtits. (It helps to learn their subtle calls, which they make incessantly.) Get one in focus after great effort. Hit the shutter repeatedly until it's no longer in focus. Hope. Repeat.

Fortunately they're common so there are ample opportunities to try. This one was with a little flock in the willows at Laguna Grande Park last week. Those Bushtit flocks have had some distinguished friends of late, including a Lucy's Warbler (now absent for weeks), at least two wintering Yellow Warblers, and a Nashville Warbler.

But today let's make it about the Bushtit, North America's only member of the family Aegithalidae. All other species in the family are found in Eurasia! (I KNEW they were weird, said everyone.)

Here are thumbnails of their exotic relatives:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?place_id=any&subview=map&taxon_id=7264&view=species

Posted on February 22, 2024 06:38 PM by billhubick billhubick | 0 comments | Leave a comment

MBP - Crested Mudalia (Leptoxis carinata)

Crested Mudalia (Leptoxis carinata) is a freshwater snail with records scattered across a roughly Appalachian range. They're found in Atlantic drainages from New York to North Carolina. Maryland Biodiversity Project has records from the Piedmont, Blue Ridge, and Ridge and Valley regions but not Garrett County. It appears to favor high-gradient unpolluted streams, where it is generally found on stones.

The Piedmont starts at the Fall Line (picture Route 1 or I-95) and includes the area immediately to the west. East of the Fall Line is the coastal plain. The range of many Maryland taxa end at one side or the other of that line! While it may appear subtle at first glance, think rocky streams to the west, sandy streams to the east, and then layer on details from there. Without naming species, what other habitat-level differences appear on one side or the other of the Fall Line?

This MBP map allows you to toggle physiographic provinces, counties, and USGS quads - https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/quadMap.php

📸: (c) Rob Aguilar/SERC - Howard Co., Maryland (4/12/2018).

🔍 More at Maryland Biodiversity Project:
https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/17499

Bill

Posted on February 22, 2024 06:33 PM by billhubick billhubick | 1 comment | Leave a comment

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