Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Wildlife Wednesday April 2019

It's Wildlife Wednesday and time to share my wildlife sightings from the last month or so.  Wildlife Wednesday is hosted by Tina at "My gardener says...." as a meme to share wildlife sightings from the garden on the first Wednesday of each month.

A bright red male Northern Cardinal is a welcome sight any time of year but spring is especially fun to see them.  They are with us most of the year though they are brighter red in winter.  Very affectionate birds, the male often feeds his mate and I enjoy their cheerful and varied mating songs.

A female Black Swallowtail nectaring on Prairie Verbena.  Female identified by the bright blue dots on her hind wings.

Monarchs stopped by on their way north.  We haven't had much sun in March but they took full advantage of what little we had to offer.

Mexican Buckeye flowers.

Resting on a Pomegranate branch.

Several baby Monarch caterpillars munched on the Tropical Milkweed.  Tropical Milkweed has been the subject of controversy but so far it's the most reliable host plant in my garden so I keep it going or add new ones each year.  The caterpillars were quite tiny, not much bigger than the diameter of a phone charger cable.  Their appetites were good though as they had already eaten quite a lot of the leaves.

I purchased this pretty sign from Texas Butterfly Ranch after registering my garden in the 300for300 list of San Antonio Pollinator Habitats.  Monika Maeckle drew on her experience in public relations and marketing to design an attractive sign to let your neighbors know why your landscape looks a bit different than a typical lawn.  That's not a problem in my neighborhood but I still enjoy displaying it in my circle garden.  If you live in the San Antonio area consider including your butterfly garden on the list.

Those are ants in the bottom right corner!

A beautiful Crested Caracara doing a pretty good Hawk imitation.  When it circled back around I saw the white markings on its head.  Caracara most often hunt by walking around or waiting on a branch so this was a treat to see it soaring high in the blue sky.

Blue skies this time of year are nice, but now we need rain again.  We are honored these magnificent birds also known as Mexican Eagles choose to spend time in our neighborhood each year.

The Whitetail deer herd has plenty to eat outside the fence this year.  We have started leaving fresh water out for the deer and other wildlife since there was no rain in March.  New fawns will arrive soon and the herd will grow.  While they do have outlets to migrate and spread out quite a bit along a system of interconnected creeks and parks which run throughout much of north San Antonio there is still quite a bit of pressure on available plants in a neighborhood like ours.

That's the round up of wildlife from my garden over the last month or so.  To share wildlife from your garden or see what other bloggers have shared be sure to check out the comments section in Tina's blog.