|The mountain ranges of
southern Arizona, October 2021
|The first herp of the trip was this red-spotted
toad (Anaxyrus punctatus).
|A vermilion flycatcher (Pyrocephalus obscurus)
takes a rest on the bench at Canoa Ranch where I snuck
in a little feathered reptile observation
| An invasive bullfrog (Lithobates
catesbeianus) in the pond at Canoa Ranch.
|This Lawrence's goldfinch (Spinus lawrencei)
was a rare sighting at Canoa.
|The welcoming party at Cave Creek Ranch in
Portal, AZ consisted of a couple striped skunks (Mephitis
|Among the many birds that visited the feeders at
the lodge at Cave Creek Ranch, a favorite was the acorn
woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)
|A nice little waterfall on a hike up the South
Fork trail of Cave Creek.
|This Yarrow's spiny lizard (Sceloporus
jarrovii) was very comfortable with us getting up
close and personal for photos.
|The photo of a male Yarrow's spiny lizard shows
off the beautiful habitat he was found in at a spot
called Red Rocks.
|A very famous mural for herpers. This is a tile
mosaic by Tell Hicks that graces the sidewalk up to Bob
and Sheri Ashley's Chiricahua Desert museum.
|A large mohave rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus)
was the first live snake of the trip. He was pretty
|We were very excited to see this desert kingsnake
(Lampropeltis splendida) and prevent him from
impending doom on the freeway.
|He looks like he has had a previous run-in with a
vehicle or a predator in the past.
|An interesting defensive posture that was adopted
after the snake was sick of our photos and handling. We
moved him well off the road for release.
|This juvenile mojave rattler was the third snake
of the night and was quite beautiful.
|Such interesting colors on this juvenile western diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox)
|The crew during the photo session with the atrox. From left to right Tom, Owen, Rob and Keith. It was a very windy night!
|The tail had an interesting peachy coloration and the overall colors were fairly muted. The color and pattern combined for one of the most beautiful diamondbacks I have seen.
|Some amazing art by Tell Hicks cover several walls of the Chiricahua desert museam. This wall was primary rattlesnakes, several of which we were hoping to see on the trip.
|So much herp memorabilia is found at the CDM. We could have spent hours looking at all the displays. This one had several different tortoise and turtle shells.
|This was not the way I wanted to see my first
wild Mexican hognose snake (Heterodon kennerlyi)
from just north of Rodeo, NM.
|What appears to be a juvenile Clark's spiny lizard (Sceloporus clarkii) was hanging out on some bolders near granite gap.
|This white-nosed coati (Nasua narica) was hanging out in a tree right next to the office of the Cave Creek Ranch office.
|Another mammalian visitor to the Cave Creek Ranch right outside our room was this Javalina or Collared Peccary (Pecari tajacu)
|A sighting of Keith McPeek in the deserts of NM.
|A wild Rob Stone overlooking the vast desert landscape of NM
|This appears to be a
juvenile Chihuahuan spotted whiptail (Aspidoscelis
exsanguis) found north of Rodeo, NM.
|Ornate tree lizards (Urosaurus ornatus) are a beautiful species
patch-nosed snake (Salvadora grahamiae) was found
in the Huachuca mountains
|Several Arizona alligator lizards (Elgaria kingii) were found in a small area
|This is a larger AZ
alligator lizard that had a partially regenerated tail
|A nice red-spotted
toad hanging out near a creek in the Huachucas
grasshopper (Brachystola magna) were a large
species that were seen frequently
grasshopper (Dactylotum bicolor) is one of the
most colorful insects I have seen.
|This was a very nice
example of a greater short-horned lizard (Phrynosoma
|This guy was sitting right in the middle of the road, so we were very happy he hadn't been hit by a car
|A live Sonoran gopher
snake (Pituophis catenifer) was a welcome sight
after seeing a few DORs. This was a very large specimen
as well as being very nicely colored.
|This beautiful banded rock rattlesnake (Crotalus lepidus klauberi) was one of the target species of the trip. This one was found by the one and only Owen McIntyre.
|Another larger specimen of rock rattlesnake was found a short distance from the first one.
|This larger specimen allowed us to take pictures without being perturbed. We also saw this same individual the following day in the same area.
|We were very happy to see this amazing rattlesnake!
|A butterfly landed on Rob as he was photographing. A good sign that Rob is a true naturalist.
|This darkly patterned canyon tree frog (Hyla arenicolor) is a little different than the ones I have found in the deserts of Utah.
|Another one we were hoping to find was the Arizona ridgenosed rattlesnake (Crotalus willardi willardi). This one was found as it crawled along a creek bed.
|The intense markings on the face make for a very attractive snake.
|The crew was happy to be able to see this amazing species.
|The snake curled up nicely at the base of a tree for photographs.
|Such a gorgeous
species of snake. We were thrilled to be able to see and
photograph one in the wild.
|How lucky can you get?! Another ridgenosed! Very happy to find two of these range restricted rattlesnakes.
|This one was found in a different canyon of the Huachucas from the first. A fitting end to an amazing trip!
Heterodon kennerlyi (DOR)
Crotalus lepidus klauberi
Crotalus willardi willardi