Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The following morning we decided to go back to the beach and hike on the trail a bit more. We worked our way through the path weaving between cactus, scrubby brush and the occasional bush festooned with gigant-o wasps. We were rewarded many times for our efforts. First we came upon a couple chipmunks, but they scurried under a low bush. We have found that they are set at ease rather quickly. If we stand still long enough they come back out and resume going about their business of being cute furry little things. I watched one female come out of the bush and hop on a rock facing me about 7 feet away. She watched me and must have decided I wasn't a threat because she went on to do the cutest thing. She went under an overhanging bush limb, dug for a second with fore paws then shoved her face into the dirt, pushed forward with her snout until she was laying in a small ditch stretched out on her stomach and pretty vulnerable. We didn't know if its a mating thing, a way to cool down or a "look how cute I am" display. Either way it was pretty funny. Meanwhile some little birds were chirping and fluttering around so I decided I would quietly make my way over to them. It was a damn good thing that I was looking where I was going because nestled between two rocks less than three feet away was a rattlesnake. Though it couldn't have been more than two feet long, I know the last thing we want is a bite from one. David came over with his walking stick and stretched the snake out a bit which was cool until it doubled back and came towards us. With David's guidance (or poking it with a stick) it moved to the shade under a large shrub. That got my adrenaline going!

We doubled back towards the mangroves since we saw some little birds in the trees. David watched a warbler while I snapped some photos of the Black-throated sparrows. Once I headed over to investigate the bird David was watching I found another surprise...another snake. This one was in the tree on a branch looking ready for any food to come its way. I am not too familiar with types of snakes, but David says it looked like a Garter snake. I still wasn't going to stick my fingers anywhere near it though. We left the snake to do its thing and went back towards the lagoon and found some fiddler crabs to bother.

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