Sunday, January 30, 2011

Just Like Spring

Anna's Hummingbird, Calypte anna, singing. It's like Springtime in Southern California. The peaches are blooming and the birds are starting to nest. This little hummingbird has staked out the top branch on my apricot tree.

Who was Anna anyhow? Was she a famous ornithologist? A California settler? No, she was Anna Masséna, Duchess of Rivoli. This little hummingbird was named after her by René Primevère Lesson, a French naturalist and surgeon, who served in the French navy during the Napoleonic wars.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Buckeye Butterfly

Buckeye Butterfly, Junonia coenia, Mission Trails Park. The adults are found in sunny/grassy fields and the caterpillars live on plantains.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Feels Like Spring

Aloe speciosa (or some close cousin in Asphodelaceae) blooming in the front yard. This year, probably due to the warm January and wet November/December here in Southern California, the Aloe are all blooming early. None of their flowers are quite as dramatic or as stately as the Aloe speciosa. Ironically, there are normally two Aloe speciosa blooming in the front yard each February. However, possibly because the bigger one is crowding out the smaller one, this year there was only one...but with twice the flowers as normal.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011

Spider Lilly in the Rain

Crinum amabile, Spider Lilly in the rain at the Ho'omaluhia Botanical Gardens in Kaneohe, Hawaii.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Prickly Pear

Prickly Pear Fruit, Makapu'u, Oahu. Do you suppose these brightly colored fruit have something to do with how the Opuntia cacti received its common name, Prickly Pear?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Holy Tentacles!

Porites lobata, Coral head, Hanauma Bay, Oahu. Have you ever looked at a coral head up close? It's a wonderland community of tiny creatures. You can see the myriad of little tentacles waving in the current in this photo.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Smells Like Apricot!

Blc. Orange Digger 'Kiilani'. This lovely Cattleya has hard, waxy substance, a glossy sheen, rich orange color and, best of all, has the faintest smell of apricots and oranges.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Agave attenuata

Agave attenuata in bloom. These don't bloom very often but they make up in quatity what they don't do in frequency. The nectar is also a favorite with the birds.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Fishing for Christmas Dinner

This family was out fishing for Ulua (big Jacks) that run along the Makapu'u coast for Christmas dinner. I didn't notice them in the picture at first but when I zoomed in to the scenic shot, there they were! It's amazing how pictures reveal details that we might otherwise miss.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Taking Shelter from the Wind

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly (or Passiflora butterfly) taking shelter on the ground from strong gusty winds blowing over Makapu'u.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy 2011!

Wishing you all the best for 2011! Happy New Year! Goong Hee Fat Choy! Goong Hee Fa Tsai! Haouli Makahiki Hou! Bonne Annee!