Not so anomalous anymore

Early last year I wrote about the differences between the two sides of the road to the Verde River recreation area on the Tonto NF. The fenced area to the east was completely horse-beat and chewed up, not to mention trashed. The west side was relatively pristine, mature Arizona Upland with ironwood, palo verde and mesquite trees along with a dense population of large buckhorn chollas. The cryptobiotic crust was well-developed.

I returned this morning and found that the horses have learned to use the step-over gate on the east side of the road. Now they are converting that relatively pristine area into yet more horse-beat land. About 1/4 of the cryptobiotic crust has been turned into bare dirt. And to top it off, idiots dumped broken concrete, landscape debris and empty containers of god-knows-what off the single dirt road in the area.

[Expletive deleted].

Posted by stevejones stevejones, June 02, 2018 21:36

Observations

Photos / Sounds

What

Desert Ironwood Olneya tesota

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:05 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:11 AM MDT

Description

Few Larrea in the area; this one had numerous A. apicata glls.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:13 AM MDT

Description

Galls aren't in good shape. Can't call the species - barbata or fabalis maybe?

Photos / Sounds

What

Marine Blue Leptotes marina

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:16 AM MDT

Description

Caterpillar (or larval stage of something else) on Prosopis velutina fruit

Photos / Sounds

Square

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:19 AM MDT

Description

Pair in photo; note splits at distal ends.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:20 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Creosote Cone Gall Midge Asphondylia rosetta

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:22 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Buckhorn Cholla Cylindropuntia acanthocarpa

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:25 AM MDT

Description

Very comman and large plants in the area.

Photos / Sounds

What

Saguaro Carnegiea gigantea

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:27 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Creosote Bush Larrea tridentata

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:32 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:33 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Black-tailed Gnatcatcher Polioptila melanura

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:34 AM MDT

Description

ID'd to species by call

Photos / Sounds

What

California Barrel Cactus Ferocactus cylindraceus

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:35 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Velvet Mesquite Prosopis velutina

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:37 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Harris' Antelope Squirrel Ammospermophilus harrisii

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:51 AM MDT

Description

Chichimoco

Photos / Sounds

What

Catclaw Acacia Senegalia greggii

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:54 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

White-winged Dove Zenaida asiatica

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:59 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Marine Blue Leptotes marina

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 07:04 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Crab Spiders Family Thomisidae

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 07:14 AM MDT

Description

On Larrea tridentata

Photos / Sounds

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 07:17 AM MDT

Description

Large weevil on Larrea tridentata

Photos / Sounds

What

Curve-billed Thrasher Toxostoma curvirostre

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 07:37 AM MDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Ash-throated Flycatcher Myiarchus cinerascens

Observer

stevejones

Date

June 2, 2018 06:35 AM MDT

Description

Got this one photo before it flew.

Comments

Thumb

Story of all my favorite birding spots :(

Posted by marissa-b over 1 year ago (Flag)
Thumb

Feral horses now have more protected status than most of the native wildlife. Someone at Tonto NF might be interested in knowing that they crossed the fence.

Posted by buzzard over 1 year ago (Flag)
Thumb

Good point, Rob. I'll be going by the Cave Creek ranger station some time this week and will drop in and let them know.

Posted by stevejones over 1 year ago (Flag)

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