January 26, 2022 Las Virgenes Canyon

It's always great to post something when you have an amazing discovery or see interesting creatures. However, sometimes things don't work out and you find very little. Today was such a day, and it seems worthwhile to post something based on the condition of the habitat.

I went to one of my favorite areas, Las Virgenes Canyon and I saw very little on my 4 mile hike. In fact, it was very disappointing to see the habitat. While the initial trail into the area never has great habitat due to the amount of invasive plants, once you get past that, things usually pick up. You can also count on this location as having a little bit of water in some places most of the time, even during droughts.

I hadn't been to the area since our last big rainstorm and it appears that a combination of that storm along with all the dead and dying trees that were a result of the Woolsey fire in late 2018 as well as our recent strong winds, pretty much destroyed the two riparian habitats where I normally find a fair amount of wildlife.

Instead, the reeds in the creek bed were bent down and clogging the stream. Trees and limbs were down in several places, many of them small, but nevertheless, contributing to the general look of destruction. While there was water in some areas that normally are dry, that didn't seem to make up for the lack of wildlife in general. As you can see from the few photos posted, the trees (for instance the one on which the nuthatch is perched) in the riparian areas pretty much all look like that one--charred. Even some of the willows and valley oaks that seemed to have bounced back after the fire didn't look too good.

I'm hoping that we actually get more rain at some point this year and maybe some of the habitat will recover. That being said, I did see 5 red tailed hawks --a species that seems to be having a very good year as well as one Lewis's woodpecker, a species that is also having a good year.

Posted by naturephotosuze naturephotosuze, January 26, 2022 10:43 PM

Observations

Photos / Sounds

What

White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)

Observer

naturephotosuze

Date

January 26, 2022 11:07 AM PST

Description

Las Virgenes Canyon

Photos / Sounds

What

Lewis's Woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis)

Observer

naturephotosuze

Date

January 26, 2022 12:06 PM PST

Description

Las Virgenes Canyon

Photos / Sounds

What

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)

Observer

naturephotosuze

Date

January 26, 2022 12:05 PM PST

Description

Las Virgenes Canyon

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