2016 Jan 17 – a quick Arizona experience
I found myself briefly in Arizona this weekend, and despite it not being a planned “adventure,” of course I’m always tracking. Got some new tracks I’d never seen before.
I was in an area that is renowned as a birding hot spot, and it’s also not far from where there have been jaguar sightings. That’s right, JAGUAR. This place in southern Arizona in the Santa Rita mountains is an interesting ecology, high desert, and home to some of the only perennial creeks in these deserts. The Santa Rita mountains are in the shadows of Mount Wrightson.We broke out for a short hike in the Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve, and though we didn’t see a lot of wildlife (it was midday), we spotted some nice tracks.
cfresh small mountain lion track (probably female) / Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve AZ
coati track / Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve AZ
We stumbled on some mysterious feed sign, it looked like broccoli barfed up in the middle of the trail. As we considered all possible solutions, including vegetarian humans that might have puked on the trail after a rough night at the Wagon Wheel, we finally came upon a solution …
osage orange fruits, a non-native that is present in the area
I determined that likely it was wood rats (tracks below) and also possibly squirrels that were opening up the fruits and leaving the broccoli-like remnant behind …
Beautiful country, I can’t wait to return.
javelina (collared peccary) tracks