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Saturday, April 11, 2015


Scott's Oriole (young male)
I'm not a birder per se; that is, I don't keep a written record of all the birds I see, but I do enjoy spotting birds out in the desert.  Their presence is one of the defining characteristics of an enjoyable hike.

Becca's test results came in yesterday.  The vet, Dr. Thompson, called to say the biopsy revealed a Mass Cell Tumor (Grade 1), which is a low-level malignancy; in fact, several of the vet websites I visited yesterday described it as "benign."  Dr. Amber Thompson said the test revealed that she had excised it completely with wide margins, and that was good news.  She did say that dogs who get these kinds of tumors often get them again, so we have to monitor Becca carefully for any suspicious growths.  I'm going to keep Becca away from more strenuous exercise until we have her sutures removed next week.  She got a walk up the arroyo this morning, but she's champing at the bit to get out for a real hike.
Same young male

Taking flight

Heckle and Jeckle (two Cactus Wrens)

Black-throated Sparrow

Black-throated Sparrow

Scott's Oriole (adult male)

Leap of faith


Roadrunner in an Ocotillo

This is how high the Roadrunner is off the ground (about 10')

Scouting the desert for breakfast

Taking off in pursuit of something

Black-throated Sparrow

Southwest Environmental Center back-by-noon outing


Dr. K said...

Wow--those bird photos, especially of the roadrunner, are great. I'm so relieved that the news about Becca is pretty good.


So glad the vet got all the tumour. I guess it wasn't exactly the news you wanted to hear. At least Becca has an outstandingly healthy lifestyle and is a very happy pooch, which must give her a great advantage. Much exciting trekking ahead for her!

Enjoying the birds and desert wildflowers.

Caroline said...

Good news about Becca!

Scott said...

Very good news about Becca, Packrat! For humans, the doctors would do a MOHs procedure to ensure they "got it all" so I certainly hope Dr. Thompson took out a big chunk! Sometimes, I can't believe how birds can stand on such thorny plants like your ocotillo. They do the same thing here on multiflora roses and blackberries; ouch!

packrat said...

Thanks, Jacqui. Becca's got so much pent-up energy I'm a little concerned how she'll act when I unleash her on the desert next week.

packrat said...

Thanks, Caroline!

packrat said...

Scott: Thank you. Yes, I think Dr. Thompson got a big chunk. I, too, am amazed by birds standing on thorny plants. I've also seen snakes slither across Prickly Pear Cactus pads, and that totally amazes me.

Hump Day Hawk

Tortugas and the Organs We got a fairly early start this morning so it wasn't hot at all:  62F.  The cloud cover helped the temperature ...