Saturday, December 29, 2012

Saturday Snapshot: Spines? What Spines?


Stop by At Home With Books to get the links to all the other photos shared by participants in this wonderful meme. The rules are few and easy, so I hope you'll be joining us, too! (Click on any of the photos below to see them in much larger sizes.)


~~~~~~~~~~~~


A photo op at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix.

This is the time of year when thousands of people from all over the country (and the world) come here to the Sonoran Desert to escape cold, snow and cabin fever. Our mild winters filled with sunshine and plenty of strange things to see keep visitors' cameras working overtime. Some places, like the Desert Botanical Garden, provide photo ops for visitors-- even small plinths on which to place your camera while you run to get into the picture with your friends. 

But just how much thought do you give to those alien-looking things called... what? Saguaro? Prickly pear? Covered with those razor sharp spines, how can they be of any use to anyone or anything?

As I'm about to show you, it's all a matter of perspective-- and what you learned at your mama's knee!


The Arizona state bird-- the Cactus Wren

As you can see above, the Arizona state bird, the cactus wren, doesn't have any problems at all with those sharp spines. In fact, some of their favorite meals and nesting spots can be found in and around various types of cacti.


Snack time, anyone?

And even this little ground squirrel thinks that chunks of cholla cactus are among the tastiest things to eat on this planet. Spines? What spines?


46 comments:

  1. Your pics of the local fauna enjoying the local flora are wonderful :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And I love how you worded your comment! :-)

      Delete
  2. I love the photos! That's a beautiful area. I love the dessert, we are moving to New Mexico hopefully in the coming year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are some beautiful places in New Mexico!

      Delete
  3. Your photos are lovely, and it looks so warm. Would love to be somewhere warm right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I grew up in snow and cold country. Brrrrrrrrr!

      Delete
  4. What a great idea to provide a stand for a self portrait in the desert! Great shots of your warm home. Things are a little colder here. Here's Mine

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've been watching the snow move across the country. I'm glad we just get the occasional rain here!

      Delete
  5. I love visiting the Botanical Gardens when we are in Phoenix! Hope to go again on our next visit - not sure when that will be. Maybe early 2013. We'll see.

    Cathy, I enjoyed your pictures of your holiday decorations. Sounds like you guys had a happy desert Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We certainly did, and I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, too. It made my day to see your comment here!

      Delete
  6. Fabulous photos. This garden looks so inviting to visit.

    Happy New Year

    Carol
    DizzyC

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Garden is a wonderful place to visit, Carol!

      Delete
  7. Definitely depends on one's perspective. I actually love the way cacti look...but try to keep my distance. lol

    Here's MY SATURDAY SNAPSHOT POST

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There's one type of cholla which has spines attracted to body heat. Now THAT one I certainly do keep my distance from! LOL

      Delete
  8. Replies
    1. And very different from the little house wrens I grew up watching in central Illinois!

      Delete
  9. Cathy - A terrific reminder that it all depends on how you look at things. I love those 'photos! Such a great shot of the ground squirrel!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did get a butt shot of the little guy, but refrained from using it. This time. LOL!

      Delete
  10. I love the photos! It's cold here right now so I'd love to be out your way!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Depending on your idea of cold, it's been a bit chilly here. Only in the 50s and low 60s here during the day!

      Delete
  11. Beautiful photos. We have six inches of snow, and it is continuing to fall. :)

    ENJOY!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am enjoying not being in the snow!

      Delete
  12. I like the pics, I need more sunny pics in my life throughout winter ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll have to see what I can do about that, Sheila! I remember all too many gray winter days in the Midwest. Ugh.

      Delete
  13. We just got our first dusting of snow and I want to escape it! Love the pics.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I escaped the snow back in 1976. Now I just dabble in it when I feel like it. I prefer it this way! LOL

      Delete
  14. Great nature shots! I love the photos of the Cactus Wren and the squirrel!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great photos! I've never been to a desert. I think a trip to this botanical garden would be fascinating! Thanks for posting. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you'd love visiting the Desert Botanical Garden-- fascinating art, flora, and fauna!

      Delete
  16. Who's afraid of a little spine? Not me! Great photos.


    Saturday Snapshot

    ReplyDelete
  17. Cacti are so pretty! I would love to be in the warm desert air right now.

    ReplyDelete
  18. As always, love your posts of the desert!
    Someday, maybe I will live where it is warmer! *dream*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My ideal would be to live here most of the year, but someplace a tad cooler in the summer!

      Delete
  19. Gorgeous photos. I love seeing the bright sunshine. If I look out my window, I see snow and overcast skies! Not complaining by any means, but I love seeing pretty desert photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you enjoy seeing them because I enjoy sharing them!

      Delete
  20. Bear With Me...the cactus wren is my favorite♫ Stay safe in the New Year♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I never will forget the time a cactus wren came up and stuck its beak in my ice cream when I had my back turned!

      Delete
  21. Fun to see that the critters aren't nearly as cautious of spines as we are!

    Joy's Book Blog

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I certainly wish I had their agility around those spines, Joy! LOL

      Delete
  22. I experienced how sharp those spines were once before. Nice photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have, too. I got too close to some when I was putting Christmas lights on a big cactus in our front yard!

      Delete
  23. That's hilarious about the cactus wren sampling your ice cream.
    I find it amazing that they can get nutrition from and nest in cacti. I'd like to know how they do that.

    What enjoyable photos!

    We're about to hit the mid 20s this week in the Big Apple.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most of the cactus have fruits that all sorts of animals find delicious, and I've seen birds nest where an arm of a saguaro meets the trunk-- as well as those birds who bore holes into a saguaro and nest inside. Then there are the insects that are drawn to the cactus flowers. Cacti sustain a wide assortment of wildlife, and it's fun to see them do it!

      Delete

Thank you for taking the time to make a comment. I really appreciate it!