Sunday, May 10, 2009

Desert Spring

Spring is my favorite time of year in the desert of the Uinta Basin. Why? Because for about two weeks, it's actually green. Also, there are abundant beautiful flowers to be found. I've posted pictures of desert flowers before here, but not these kinds.That last one is actually a wild onion.

In addition to green foliage, animal life is pretty abundant. I've only ever seen 4 snakes since I started this job (I guess you can call me lucky). But three of them have been in the past two weeks. Here are two of them; a big one and a little one.Besides snakes, other squamate reptiles like the desert too. I know I've put a horny toad on here before, but this guy was big! He didn't even move when we got close. Also, this lizard had no tail and was super aggresive. As one of my co-workers and I were digging up a fossil, he wouldn't leave the area, we even saw him rush, tackle, and run off another one of his species (one with a tail).Lastly, this spidery guy and one of his friends were living under a rock filled with crocodile vertebrae that we collected. He was about an inch in diameter if you include his legs.
Just goes to show you, the desert isn't completely barren, and that I know how to find live animals in addition to fossilized ones.

Your diamond brightly burns,



Amanda said...

I am glad that you posted the photo of that crazy lizard!! It's nuts. You'd think it would learn after losing its tail...

becca said...

It looked like it hurt to me. Wonder if they feel it?

Who knew hanging out in the dessert could be so fascinating? Very cool, Dan. Thanks for sharing your job with us.

Mama said...

Nice stuff, makes me not want to sleep in a tent at night in the desert, though. Ü

Faith said...

Thanks for this post Dan. I liked it.