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Borrego Springs, CA

Friday, June 20, 2014

Where’s Waldo (the white pelican)?

When each Friday morning dawns, I know what I have to do.  It’s time to work the morning in the visitors center (VC).  It’s not that I really dislike working the VC, it’s just that I’d rather be outside doing other things.  A half a day isn’t so bad though, and at least today 16 people stopped in.  When no one shows up, it’s more than a little boring.  Early on, a lady came in and announced, “They’re blooming!”

_MG_0248Lots of folks have been waiting for this day this spring.  Notice those flowers at the bottom of the sign?  Those are pink lady slippers.  They don’t look very pink in this photo, but just wait.  We’ll probably have as many or more people visiting the refuge to see these flowers as we do morel mushroom hunters.  I was chomping at the bit to get out there and see them.  I’ve been checking one of the best spots on the refuge just about every day with no luck.

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Once I got home for lunch, there was this good sized snapping turtle in John and Bridgett’s driveway.  Probably a female looking for a place to lay its eggs.

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Eventually, she moved on and made her way along the mowed grass line.  Do you see those two black round things on its shell?  I thought they might be snails hitchhiking a ride.  It turned out they were leeches (ick!) as you’ll see in my last pic of this post.  She sauntered along the grass edge about 50’, and then made a 90 degree turn to go right under John and Bridgett’s rig.  Then she stopped.  I banged on their door to let them know they had a visitor.  Guess she wasn’t going to do anything while we all watched, so I asked John and Bridgett if they’d like to go see the lady slippers.

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We piled into the truck and headed down County 29.  Sure enough, overnight the blossoms had appeared.

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These beauties will only be here for the next week or two, so I’m sure I’ll be posting more pictures of them.  Some of the blooms are darker than others.  I like the deeper colored ones best.  As we stopped for photos, three more cars pulled over to join us.  I guess it’s kind of like folks stopping for pictures of blue bonnets in the Hill Country of Texas.  You just have to marvel at them while they’re here for a brief time.

Do you remember those Where’s Waldo books back in the 90’s?  I had several of them that I used when I worked in juvenile corrections in New York.  The boys always enjoyed trying to find Waldo, and everything else that was hidden in those pictures.  Today I took a picture that kind of reminded me of those books.

_MG_0228You’ll probably have to click on it to enlarge it, but can you find at least 14 dragonflies, 34 trumpeter swans, and one “Waldo” the white pelican?  I hope you enjoy this little challenge.

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                                 THE END!!  (notice the uncurled leech on the right side of the shell.)

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy

32 comments:

  1. Yuk! I hate leeches, too. But love all your pics, especially the flowers. Thanks, Judy!

    Ann M

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  2. That was SOME turtle!!! Great pictures... love the flowers too!

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  3. Great pictures of the flowers and the turtle. Always enjoy learning different things reading your post.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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  4. Great Waldo pic-- wonder if that pelican knows he's not a swan?!!! Gorgeous lady slippers-- must be so much fun now to see everything blooming and growing! The leeches shot? well...very educational! Much appreciated!!!

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  5. Have to show your pictures to grandson Owie, he loves everything about turtles. :c)

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  6. oh, I so hope I find some pink lady's slippers here in Wisconsin, and that I haven't missed the entire season. . .so beautiful. . .lovely photos of them!

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  7. Love the beauty of the lady slippers. Especially like the last pic of the turtle...reminded me of Eor...

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  8. The lady slippers are gorgeous. I'm embarassed to say I counted white 32 birds in the picture. Guess I'd better go back and recount. I couldn't identify any dragonflies but that is probably due to my vision problems.

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  9. Love the lady slippers. How can you tell a turtle is a snapping turtle? I assume you don't dangle your finger in front of it. ::grin:: Well, I failed. I found the pelican. Dragonflies--you were kidding, right?

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  10. I think I found Waldo but not sure. The lady slippers are wonderful and that end shot just cracks me up.

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  11. Love the lady slippers. They look very delicate. Back when I was nursing we used sterile leaches to help with new skin grafts. it was pretty gross but it worked. They really diod get the blood flowing.

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  12. I have to bow to your lady slippers. They are more beautiful than mine. And your pictures of them make that easy to see. I seem to be hitting each spot just at the later days of their blooms. I do love them. But now I want to see yellow ones. Leaches....oh yuck! Did she lay her eggs under their rig?

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  13. I see the swans and I'll take your word for it on the 14 dragonflies … eyes too old… is that Waldo flying in? sure don't seem him anywhere else! and I don't see the leech … don't want to look that hard … don't care for leeches… poor ol turtle…

    LOVE the lady slippers….

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  14. With our internet system the way it is (or, should I say "isn't", it takes forever for photos to download. But the pink lady slippers were worth waiting for. I've never seen any here... will have to ask if they're around.

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  15. I don't think I've ever seen lady slippers. They are beautiful.

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  16. Those leeches are gross!

    If the black things in the sky are the dragonflies, I think I found them all.

    Our friends are in Wisconsin and she has put a ton of photos of the lady slippers they are seeing. That flower is on my bucket list.

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  17. I found Waldo. Did not count swans or dragonflys.

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  18. I spotted Waldo right away..Love those Pelicans!

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  19. Pretty cool pics of that turtle. That was a good sized leach that can roll up in such a little ball- amazing!

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  20. Great game..yes I saw the Pelican Those Dragonflies are wonderful skeeter eating machines. The Slippers are beautiful thanks for the heads up:)

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  21. Have only experienced leech's one time. I agree. YUCK!!!! Nice pic's of the lady slippers.

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  22. We had a Waldo a couple of years back. A stray cat. Loved him, loved him. Those Lady Slippers are a lot prettier than that snapper.

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  23. What a beauty those pink lady slippers are!

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  24. We really miss not keeping up with your blog. Your photo's are wonderful as we said in the passed. Keep up the good work.

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  25. Found him (the white pelican!) :) Hope the lady snapper found a good spot to lay her eggs that was not directly under the rig next door. Probably she was just resting in a safe place.I have one about that size come out of the pond across the street and visit my yard just about every summer. Haven't seen her yet. I worry she'll get squished on the road, but she'd be hard not to see, so hopefully people around here are careful.

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  26. Last Thursday, while on one of the ATV trails, we saw a snapping turtle lay her eggs. Of course - no camera, when will I learn?) Wonder if her choice of nests was the wisest. ATV's will be driving over it constantly. It amazes me how they know they are near waterways to lay their eggs. This one was about 50 feet from the Wolf River.

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  27. Lovely ladyslippers and one tough looking turtle.

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  28. The Lady Slippers of the Queen are blooming here as well...they are gorgeous!!!

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  29. One of your better "The End" shots.

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