Photos from Sept 2010 Galiuros field trip

Here are a few photos from a recent, only tangentially geological, "field trip" to a wild and beautiful place, the Hooker Hot Springs area of on the southwest side of the Galiuro Mountains.

The Galiuros looking northeast.

There were hundreds of totally native fish in this spring-fed pool in lower Bass Canyon. We could distinguish at least three different species but we hear there are nine native kinds here, including the Desert Pupfish, soon to be the star of its own 3-D horror flick (the Pliocene Desert Pupfish were much bigger and had really big teeth).

I had always wanted to see one of these, the Arizona Black Rattlesnake, which is nearly endemic to Arizona only (there are a handful in western New Mexico). This guy was digestin' a big lump by a nice quiet stream. He's giving us the evil eye, but other than that didn't budge.

What a riparian zone along this wash! Note the transition from rabbitbrush in the high foreground, to mesquite and saguaro on the upper terrace, to cottonwoods, sycamores, ash, and willow in the wash. We saw a chulo (coatimundi) down in that wash.

I've still never seen a mountain lion, but these have to be one's tracks. Nice kitty.

These guys were EVERYWHERE. And they're kinda funny, until you see their cannabalistic and predatory side. Grasshopper expert Jeff Lockwood says that he's almost certain this is Brachystola magna, the Plains or Western Lubber. They are pretty amazing. But we also saw Horse Lubbers and Rainbow Grasshoppers (the latter are unbelievable).

Who isn't happy in an ocotillo forest?