Monday, May 8, 2017

2017 CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP - APRIL 21ST, 2017 - ARIZONA SONORA DESERT MUSEUM - PART 2



Continuing our visit to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, we enjoyed seeing the Big Horn sheep.  There was a male and two females, one with a  super cute baby.  



Papa was keeping a wary eye on things.









Here's Mom.  The other female was nearby.



Again with baby.



And one more shot of the baby.  It was very active.


There was a gentleman on the side of the enclosure who had any information you needed about these and other deer.  He gave me one of the horns of a Big Horn, which was lying on the table.  I was surprised how heavy it was.



Here are a few facts about Big Horns.



We were delighted to find an aviary full of hummingbirds.  This link is from the museum's website.  Gregg took all the photos on the hummingbirds, and several throughout the museum.







There were some that were nesting. 



In another aviary we saw Gambrel Quails.



There were birds on the outside too.  This one looked like a female or a baby cardinal?  Maybe you can tell me for sure.



I believe this was a Cactus Wren.



Gregg took this photo of the Coati



There were sculptures of various animals, this one of a Javelina.




More of those beautiful yellow cactus flowers.


And others starting to bloom.



A very interesting and pretty red bug.  I identified him as a Bloody Net-winged Beetle and you can see more photos here.



I always like to pop into the reptile exhibit and here I found another volunteer with a snake wrapped around his arm.  He asked me if I would like to touch it, which I did.  I'm trying to remember what kind it was but didn't make a note of it.  If I don't write things down I so quickly forget.  I enjoyed another experience, and it was fascinating to see its tongue flicker.  Snakes use them to collect the odors that are present in miniscule moisture particles floating through the air, and also to smell.  No photos as it was very dark in there.

I almost forgot to mention that in each bathroom they have a hand pump of sun block that you are urged to use as you are greeted at the entrance, and reminded that this is the desert and we need to drink lots of water.  They have probably had a lot of people swooning in that heat.  We carried our water around with us, and also visited those sunblock pumps throughout.  I noticed what people were wearing.  Many wore long sleeves and their clothing was of a material that is designed for this kind of climate.  Most wore hats with very wide brims.  I took note!



So that was our trip to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.  I can highly recommend it to anyone who finds themselves in the area.  I have other photos and will share them as time goes on.

Gregg's cousin called not too long ago and tonight we pop on over to spend a couple of hours with one of his aunts who lives in Yuma. Tomorrow we go over to his cousin's house.  There are other family members in the area, whom we saw last January in Washington DC.  We are really looking forward to seeing them again, and looking forward to meeting others I have not met yet.

3.29 p.m. just stopped on the road so that Gregg can book our hotel in Yuma. We are at a gas station called Dateland Fuels and they have Pet facilities - cages - where you can leave your pets safely, instead of  them being in a hot car while you are shopping in their store.  There are locks provided inside the store.

We were parked next to a car from Florida. 

 4.09 p.m.  On the road we passed a car with license plates from Virginia. We're guessing they might me Navy.  Gregg and I made our first cross country road trip when he changed duty stations from Virginia to San Diego 39 years ago. 

4.36 pm the strangest thing.  We ended our journey, or so we thought, at a farmer's house, with farm equipment everywhere.  This is the second time we have used the hotel's app.  When you book the room it asks you if you want to use their directions.  We have said yes.  Last time we ended up at the wrong place, 15 to 20 minutes away from where we should be, but decided to give it another try.  This time we were instructed to drive down a very long dirt road with large fields at either side.  You should have seen Gregg and I looking at each other, trying to figure out if this was the right place and were we on another wild goose chase. There was a large domed structure and we asked ourselves, could this be the hotel?  As we looked at it from a distance, it seemed big enough but there were no signs.  We parked next to a tractor and a truck and a couple of other old pieces of farming equipment, not too far from the farmer's front door, and knew this was the wrong address.  No one came out to greet us.  We quickly put in fresh instructions, staying well clear of the original hotel ones, skedaddled and found the right place 10 minutes later.  For the second time we told the desk clerk what had happened.  Hopefully the information will be provided so that they can work on that glitch.  I'm sure we are not the only ones who turned up at the wrong place.

We spent the evening with Gregg's aunt.   We had a lovely time. She is still the dear, sweet lady I remember.  (When I first came to the States and Gregg put out to sea for the first time, we were living in San Diego and she and Gregg's uncle drove on over all the way from Yuma to take me out for the day.  It was one of the nicest things they could ever do for a homesick girl from England.  I loved them for it and will be forever appreciative for their loving kindness that day.)  We made friends with a little dog who was being looked after for a while. She came straight to me, jumped up on the couch and asked for a tummy rub. It was a lovely couple of hours chatting about old times.   


And now the day is over, we are back in our hotel and we are ready for another good night's sleep.




36 comments:

  1. Lovely birds and the red bug looks bright!

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    1. Thank you DA, it was the bright red color that drew my attention right away, otherwise I would have missed it completely.

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  2. This little wren is very interested in your cactus wren, I have never seen one before! Looks a good day out in the desert, but I would not be too keen to get up close to the snakes!
    Wren x

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    1. Thanks Wren, I don't mind reptiles but wouldn't get near the poisonous kind.

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  3. All the different animals and birds are very interesting, the photos are great, too bad your GPS continues to send you down the he wrong road, I guess you could say that it is giving you places to see that you would have missed otherwise, all part of a good trip.

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    1. Thanks Jimmy, we only used the hotel's GPS app twice. After that we used our own. I agree, it did take us down an interesting road we would not have had the chance to see otherwise

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  4. Denise, I actuall said oh out loud many times. the photos are AMAZING and I love them ALL. the first few of the goats I looked and looked at them. you have taken the trip that is on my bucket list.

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    1. Thank you Sandra, me too. It was on our bucket list for a long time.

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  5. Love this post and interesting animals that I do not know.
    I never trust any directions given by hotels. I always track down exactly where they are on Google Earth and then get my own co-ordinates!!!
    Keep well Diane

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    1. Hi Diane, very happy you enjoyed it. Thanks for the tip on Google Earth :)

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  6. Oh those hummingbirds. How lovely to have seen that.

    And your visiting has been one of the nicest things, about this trip.

    Be safe!

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    1. Sorry I missed your comment LC. I have been going through my posts just to make sure I didn't miss anyone. Glad I found yours as I see a few others need answering also.

      Those hummingbirds are a pure delight. Thank you for your well wishes.

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  7. I love to see photos of the animals and birds. Seems like you thoroughly enjoyed your visit to the museum.

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    1. I did Gigi, it was a special treat I had been looking forward to for a very long time.

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  8. I especially like your first shot of the sheep. Because they are really dwarfed by the huge mountains. They look like tiny toy sheep. This gives a great perspective of the wide open beauty there. The hummingbird photos are marvelous! they move about and flit so fast that it is almost impossible to snap them. But these are just great, and different kinds, too! I'm in love with the little Cactus Wren!And more gorgeous yellow flowers, I can never see enough. The red beetle is wild!! I am so glad you did not post the snakes. This way I LOVE it ALL!

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    1. Thanks Ginny, happy you enjoyed those beautiful creatures and you are very welcome me not taking photos of the snake, lol.

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  9. The ruby-throated hummingbird is absolutely gorgeous, Denise! And I love all the animals, birds and insects in your photos. Thank you so much for sharing this amazing and fascinating adventure!

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    1. Thanks Linda, it certainly was a beauty and so glad you enjoyed all the other wonders :)

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  10. Another wonderful but packed day. I suspect that by the time you return you will be ready to rest.
    Thank you for sharing the beauty and the wonders along the way.

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    1. Thanks EC, we certainly are and you are very welcome :)

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  11. HI Denise and you are most certainly visiting some fascinating places, wonderful images of the sheep but the favourites have to be the Hummingbirds, we had a talk a few week ago by one of Sir David Attenboroughs camera men on Hummingbirds, they are such wonderful birds. Great trip, guess it was good to go to sleep. All the best, John

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    1. Thanks John, I loved them all but those humming birds were a real joy as I so rarely get to see them. I am a big fan of David Attenborough and would have loved listening to one of his camera men. Yes, it was good getting to sleep each night. All the best, Denise.

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  12. Those sheep are quite a delight to see.

    One of my friends living in the Southwest regularly gets javelinas in her yard.

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    1. Thank you William, the sheep were very cute and how interesting about your friend. We saw signs for them but that was it.

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  13. Wow ... you are seeing so much.
    What a trip, I must say I'm enjoying it with you.

    All the best Jan

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  14. You picked a good year to visit the desert when there are lots of cactus blooms.

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  15. I laughed about the directions to the hotel...that was taking the scenic route to get to it.

    Love that baby sheep...so, so cute. And loved the story of Gregg's Aunt and Uncle coming at just the right time...just a beautiful little story.

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    1. Thank you Rose, we laughed too afterwards. Glad you enjoyed my post. His Aunt and Uncle were and are very dear people.

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  16. Good gosh! You have taken so many incredible photos!

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    1. Why thank you Kay, there are many more to come.

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  17. I enjoyed all of your photos from the museum. all good info as to what to wear in the desert! I like the idea of the pet cages and the sun screen pump.

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    1. Thanks Linda, very happy you enjoyed this post :)

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