Sunday, July 5, 2009

Today I decided to give some attention to the local trees as they show such a marvellous range of forms of texture. Above, young cypress cones, looking juicy enough to eat but hard, astringent.

Aleppo Pines showing new cones and, in the background, some old cones, also as you see, fresh needle growth this season. This richer green topped all the pines like frosting. Below, some detail of the bark of a young pine tree by the shepherd's trail.

Below: this feathery/flaky texture was found on many of the eucalyptus by the east valley dirt road, quite different from the smooth patchy nature of other eucalytpus near look-out corner and other places, (photographed a few weeks ago).

All the pomegranates have vanished from the trees by the cistern. Perhaps someone had the idea of harvesting them early and trying to mature them at home, good luck with that, they were nohwere near ripe!... or use them for some other purpose. Left long enough though the wildlife, birds etc, will go for them before they are fit for human use.

Gazelle: No luck though we scanned east field and north field and hill slopes though I could still have missed them.
Hyrax: Several spotted on the west side hill slopes near the pumping station.
Reptiles: Moshe saw a nice size skink earlier in the day.
Bee-eaters: small flock working the air above north west part of gazelle field and edge of pine woods there.
Also heard near the house around 6 a.m. Akiva noticed something of a regular thing lately.
Hobbies: calls heard only.
Turtle doves: some coos heard near central trail after sunset

Tristram's grackles: heard calling in north valley, hidden watercourse area? hard to tell. A little later one flew over us as we walked along the east valley dirt road, whistling and moving fast with the wind from the neighbourhood to windsurfer hill.. possibly same bird, but this one seems to be a regular.
Blackbirds: Some calls, smidgen of song
Chukar partridges: Not heard but a rather bedraggled feather found on shepherd's trail.
Collared doves: coos and some activity noticed.
Eurasian Jays: Some screeches, glimpses, and Prince still doing ok, getting used to us.
Graceful warblers: Some calls.
Greenfinches: calls, small groups moving about between the trees look-out corner area.
Jackdaws: flock heard early morning from the house somewhere east, intermittant calls.
Hooded crows: loose flock returning home from the north west today.. nice speed, riding the wind over north valley
Also heard calling about 4.45 a.m. and intermittantly for next half hour or so
House sparrows: Chirps in gardens from before dawn
Laughing doves: coos in gardens from dawn-ish
Stone curlews: Calls from east field area around 10.30 p.m.
Sunbirds: calls in the garden shortly after 5 a.m.
Syrian woodpeckers: Calls in the woods, activity in eucalyptus grove east of bunker, edge east field.
White spectacled Bulbuls: Calling in the garden from about 4.55 a.m

Weather: Time of walk 18.45 p.m. 22.1 degrees C. 70% WNW 10 kt.

Range today: 18-25 degrees C.

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