The last few times I’ve logged into WordPress, the typically blank page has been supplemented with a simple prompt. I’ve been lacking motivation lately, so I’ll bite.
When I was young, my father wore the same shirt every time he did yard work. The shirt had skeletons and read: “Arizona… but it’s a dry heat.” Despite being surrounded by wildlife throughout my childhood, I viewed my desert home as a place of imminent death and dad jokes.
I grew up in the fastest-growing county in the country, back before it was such. Letters to pen pals proudly stated that I lived in the “hay capital of the world” and humbly admitted the everything smelled like cows. Along with the neighboring farms and their fragrant livestock, we had lots of jackrabbits and many birds.
The Phoenix metropolitan area has expanded out beyond recognition over the course of my life, creating a 80-mile by 80-mile grid of roads, homes, and businesses. Despite that, the Phoenix suburbs are filled with wildlife.
On a daily basis, I see daredevil quail who eagerly speed in front of oncoming cars with a dozen chicks in tow. I see cactus wrens and curve-billed thrashers peeking out from saguaros, as well as gila woodpeckers hammering away at palm trees. I see (and hear) the gregarious rosy faced love birds, and desert cottontail rabbits nibbling on folidage. Oh, and we can’t forget the thousands of ankle-biting Canadian geese that keep forgetting to go home in the summer.
On a less frequent basis, I see the regal bald eagles, sorta-cute-but-awfully-mean javelinas, roaming coyotes, dumpster-diving and sewer-dwelling raccoons, goofy mountain goats, rodent-eating gopher and king snakes, and venomous rattlesnakes.
How about you? Do you ever see wild animals around your home?