Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Flora in San Diego Safari Park......

The resourcefulness of San Diego Safari Park in terms of exotic animals is renowned; however, the equally abundant flora often goes unappreciated......
Around the year, one can find flowers blooming and berries loaded on the plants..
Here are some of my captures...most of them are African native and I don't even know their identity...













Water sports at Lake Powell...

Lake Powell...one of the most spectacular lake in the entire nation...the setting for many movies, including the movie 'Gravity'..
This area belonged to the Navajo Indians, or perhaps partially still belongs to...
Ever since it was built by flooding Glen Canyon with the might Colorado river,  it has attracted millions of tourists...
We visited it this spring.. though the continuous drought has reduced water level, bordered by majestic sandstone walls, the branched, serpentine lake was striking in its beauty...any water sport enthusiasts dream come true!




Monday, June 29, 2015

Weekend hike to Lake Miramar......

This weekend we visited Lake Miramar.......about 15 miles from home...
It has a dam and recreation opportunities......
As soon as we reached there, the overcast sky broke into drizzles...a much welcome relief in parched, fire-prone San Diego...
Trapped inside the car, I took this picture...rain drops on windshield, rarely we get to see..

As it stopped, we walked down to the lake shore...the tree branches were swaying..the waves were turbulent..

Nice wooden steps led to the shores...we saw a couple of turtles bobbing up and down..and some water fowls..

As we started hiking  the 5 mile loop trail encircling the lake, saw this group...especially my spouse was elated to see eight cheerful canines...

There are fishing groups, also kayakers.. 

Chaparral around the lake had come alive with colored blooms..monkey flower, mustard, deerweed and many more I don't recognize..


Saw some interesting stuffs...like, these pink clumps on reeds? Do you know what they are? Well, these are egg mass of apple snails inhabiting the lake...

And these spiked spheroids are turban galls..

These are another kind of galls...

All these leaf and stem galls are caused by aphids, to protect and provide food for their larvae..

As the pictures reflect, it was an refreshing and informative nature walk...
Don't forget to explore your surroundings...they have the unappreciated ability to de-stress and invigorate body, heart, soul..

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Moreton bay chestnut tree in SDSU.........

Pods of a Moreton bay chestnut tree, planted in San Diego State University campus...
Got to know, the seeds contain high saponin content, and unfit for eating..however, cooking can inhibit those phytochemical and might render the seeds edible...
Another piece of literature, revealed the ongoing work on HIV inhibitor potential of the seeds...



Monday, June 22, 2015

San Diego Zoo yet again...

After a gap of few months, we visited the zoo yet again.....

Saw this baby giraffe...not even a month old...

Flamingo getting splashed to beat the heat...

Unlike its sleeping peers, this koala was awake...

Meerkat dens were populated with the babies......for the first time, saw young meerkats...

The rock hyrax was picture of bliss...

Pretty secretary bird...

Ruddy duck...

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Mission trails vegetation........

Mission trails regional park is  beautiful throughout the year.. with its diverse vegetation.......
Some common members are........

Encelia.......

Toyon..........

Mistletoe.......

Elderberry.....

California buckthorn...........

Sumac.......

 Redberry buckthorn..........

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Edible berries of fuchsia.....

Fuchsia flowers are stunning....not only the petals, the sepals are vibrant as well....

But, do you know, apart from the ornamental flowers, the juicy fruits are perfectly edible as well?

The berries have the size and appearance of Indian blackberry....



Tuna crabs washed ashore San Diego beaches..........

Past few weeks have seen millions of these 4-inch long red-orange crustaceans on the South California beaches...precisely, 'tuna crabs'....
Got to know, they inhabit the warmer waters off Mexico...due to the impact of El Nino, the oceanic currents are perturbed...and this is one of the many results...


Saturday, June 13, 2015

Old Town souvenir shop....

There is this souvenir shop in Old Town, San Diego...with hordes of decor items...I absolutely love checking out the pretty items on display...enjoy some of them...

Elephants to La Catrinas and skulls....

Dreamcatchers..........

Rust metal dinosaurs, Little Buddhas, saints to Venetian masks..

Cherubs..

Macaw-painted potteries..

Cheerful frog figurines..

Attractive owls..

Tree face sculpture..

hula girl, dolphins..

Bird bath with wildlife statuettes embedded to the rim...

Mexican desert-theme pots..

Metal wind spinner.......