Here is another addition to the Mt. Pony menagerie, a North American red fox. The red fox is actually a meta-species, with sub-species all over the world. The North American branch can be found throughout the northern half of the continent, except for the Arctic north. That’s the domain of his cousin, the Arctic fox.
This particular one has been seen around Mt. Pony on several occasions, where he dines on the local mice. At one point he got caught in one of the humane traps the security people set up for catching a troublesome raccoon. That must have been embarrassing. At least for the fox.
Another interesting creature sighted at my workplace on Mt. Pony! This image was taken on the afternoon of July 6, 2015. This is a five lined skink, one of the more common North American lizards. These little guys favor uneven, rocky terrain, because it provides a variety of hiding places, and easy access to sunning spots. They prey on worms, small insects, and other invertebrates.
They are famous for their ability to drop all or part of their tail when threatened. They are prey animals for a variety of mammal and bird species, so this trick comes in handy. While the detached tail thrashes about, a predator is momentarily confused as to which moving object is the actual menu item. More often than not, during this brief confusion, the skink is able to run and hide.
How’s that for turning tail and running?
There is some debate on the taxonomy of this creature’s name. Many sources call it eumeces fasciatus, while others call it plestiodon fasciatus. I’ll let the herpetologists settle that one.
Other creatures from Mt. Pony:
Actuas luna, commonly known as the Luna moth, can be found over roughly two thirds of North America, and is one of the largest lepidopterans in the Western Hemisphere. I’m guessing that this one, were it to fully extend it’s wings, would have covered my palm.
This one was seen outside of my workplace on the morning of June 15, 2015. From the size of the antennae, I’m guessing this is a female. The antennae of the males are much larger, and look like fern leaves. These creatures are largely nocturnal, and spend almost all of their adult life – all seven to ten days of it – mating and/or dropping eggs. Perhaps this one was resting after a busy night?
This photograph was taken from my front porch on the morning of September 26, 2014. At least that’s what the metadata says. It was one of those cases where the sunlight and morning mist were “just right” for a capture such as this. It’s uncommon to see a near geometrically perfect spider web. It’s even less common to get such a good picture of it. You will want to click on the image to see it at full clarity. It makes a good desktop wallpaper.
I don’t know what kind of spider made this web, but I suspect it’s a common garden spider. We have lots of those scurrying about. Whatever the spider, they made a darn pretty web!