Friday, January 29, 2016

The Sonora Desert*

Sonora Desert, Tucson, Arizona
Today was spent enjoying the Sonora Desert which covers an area of 100,000 miles. It is referred to as arid and with high biological diversity.  The area we visited was ripe with saguaros, blooming barrel cactus and palo verde trees.  We visited the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum which borders the Saguaro National Park.  And, yes, there were acres and acres of saguaro.  I always pictured this cactus growing in flat, bare, white deserts.  But here it appears like a forest and grows up the mountains.  They are also very tall at over 20'.  The Museum is unlike any other I've visited.  It is the very desert and arranged with winding paths that create views of specific desert regions.  The neatest part was attending the raptor exhibit.  Twice a day raptors are released to feed around a viewing area.  They are so accustomed to this activity and humans that they would feed from trees adjacent to us and fly inches above our heads.  Very cool!!  
The temps were in the 70's with really warm sun.  I was forced to buy a new hat since I thought all museums were indoors.  The colors surprised me.  We also saw a lot of the same animals and birds we saw in Costa Rica.  Sweetness was delighted to find a close relative, the javelina.  
Javelina Family with Sweetness
Tonight we began our annual effort to see all the Oscar nominated films before the awards evening.  We started with Spotlight and give it two thumbs up.  Well written, acted and directed.  They didn't even go over board with the Boston accents (except the locals, oy).  

More pics and movies at flickr.