September 12, 2020
This week is a big biodiversity search in our DFW area but I have been unable to participate due to other circumstances. So today I took a walk in my yard. I discovered I had missed three moon blooms last evening as their blooms were now hanging listlessly on the vine. BUT there is the promise of two more coming and very soon. I will have to be watchful after the sunset. As I looked at the blooms I became aware of a parade of ants going up and down a metal fence post. Those going up were ‘empty-handed’ but those going down were carrying egg sacks to a new destination on the ground in the ground cover. They had apparently taken those precious bundles to a high spot during the rains – which happens to be a hole in my fence. As a I watched them I was aware of another movement as a very small green anole moved along the fence and then jumped into a bush for a morsel to eat. This animal was less than an inch long but its tail was at least two inches long.
All over the yard are patches of surprise lilies in a brilliant orange red color. They suddenly pop up from the ground after that first fall rain – September 1 was the date this year – and they have continued coming up and blooming since them. Some have started their decline by losing their vivid color. I noted that in one area some were laying on the ground and something had stepped on them and broken them. Who or what was exploring my garden when I wasn’t looking? A tiny toad – about a half a penny size – moved away from my big feet. He could only hop a few inches but he did so quickly and disappeared in the ground cover of leaves.
I walked around a corner and found another anole of a more adult size. Part of its tail was green but the lower half was smaller and brown. I would guess it had met with a predator and was able to escape with just the loss of part of its anatomy. As I watched it climb up a wall of the green house a very small frog suddenly jumped high into the air and continued hopping towards a bush. I had finally seen one of the Rio Grande frogs that I can hear so often at night. Biodiversity journeys are often found at home.