This is for those of us who enjoy the expanding wildlife of the Mariposa. Thanks to Colleen, Mike and Amy and Heather for sending me the photos and letting me use them. Especially Amy with the butterfly on her nose!
The brightly coloured birds in the above pic – they come in orange, yellow and red – are migratory and arrive here at the beginning of the dry season (now, December) to hang out, feed and generally have a good time. Their local name here is chiciltote, much nicer then Baltimore Orioles! We have started hanging a bunch of ripe bananas in a tree overhanging the terrace which brings birds in really close – woodpeckers, tanagers, zanates – a type of thrush which has a beautiful song, reninds me of my childhood in Britain when the thrushes hadn´t been virtually eliminated by slug pellets and the like. The story goes that they sing especially vociferously towards the end of the dry season in order to call in the rains. Whatever their reason it is an extraordinarily evocative sound and I love it. And the cutest little baby squirrel also drops by and then runs off with a banana between his teeth.
When I say “we” have started hanging bunches of bananas I actually mean Armando!
One of our biggest success here at the Mariposa has been the increase in the number of hummingbirds which is good news because they are very vulnerable to general air pollution. We are always trying to plant more flowers and trees which encourage particular types of birds and butterflies, though sadly we have so far had the least amount of luck with increasing the number of butterflies. Ironic.
And this last pic is just to say hi to everyone from Guillermina and Velasque!