Category Archives: Backyard

Surprise Visitor of the Reptilian Kind

California Kingsnake

Over the Fourth of July weekend, I got a pleasant surprise. A California Kingsnake showed up in our garage (in southern Alameda County) in the middle of the afternoon! Perhaps the hot weather had something to do with it. Somehow it ended up picking the right house to visit. It was about a meter long […]

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An Afternoon Encounter with two Ladies

It was a nice warm afternoon in the East Bay this weekend. I was delighted to see butterflies flying around in my neighbors front yard, which has lots of flowers and catches the afternoon sun. There was the usual multitude of Fiery Skippers. They are very active and playful as they fly around and chase […]

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Garter Snakes Galore

Something about the month of May brought out the garter snakes, both in the wild and even at home. While I thought seeing what could have been either a California Red-sided Gartersnake or a Coast Gartersnake (frustratingly hard to identify, especially if you only get a quick look) at Tilden Regional Park was fortuitous, our […]

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Of Birds and Berries

Last weekend we noticed a flurry of bird activity in the backyard.  The perpetrators were a large number of American Robins feasting on a bush which was loaded with red berries. Closer inspection revealed a number of smaller birds – Cedar Waxwings – were also partaking of the feast. There must have been over 50 […]

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Snake Sighting in Our Backyard

In early November, I came across an interesting inhabitant of our backyard. It was a Sharp-tailed Snake. We see them every once in a while, usually in summer. This was a small one, lying still under some leaf debris because of the cold weather I suspect. At first I thought it was dead but it […]

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