Pollinator Pals

A silver-spotted skipper butterfly in the foreground, as a snowberry clearwing moth approaches the wild bergamot flower.  Photographed near Hartleton, PA, USA.

Posing Prothonotary

Named after the golden-yellow robes the early Roman prothonotaries used to wear, these beautiful warblers spend their days foraging and defending brushy territory, often bordered by water. Prothonotary Warbler photographed in Okefenokee NWR, GA, USA.

Prothonotary Warbler

Named for the golden-yellow robes of the early Roman prothonotaries, these beautiful warblers spend their days foraging and defending brushy territory, often bordered by water. Prothonotary Warbler photographed in Okefenokee NWR, GA, USA.

Red Salamander

This eastern red salamander was all-smiles about having his/her picture taken. Photo taken in Winfield, PA, USA.

Red-Eyed Dragon

While staking out a warbler nest, this lovely dragonfly (species unknown) landed on a nearby plant stalk, providing a nice distraction. The stunning, blue body caught my attention, but the crimson-colored eyes held my gaze. Photo taken at Lake Louisa State Park, FL, USA.

Regal Horned Lizard

Perhaps one of the most interesting reptiles of the American Southwest, Horned Lizards survive entirely on a diet of ants and, as a defense mechanism, can shoot blood from their eyes. Tucson, AZ, USA.

Regal Stag

Nearing the end of a 5-mile hike, this beautiful stag leapt onto the trail, dead ahead. Exchange, PA.

Ringneck Duck

Perhaps the most perplexing thing about this species is it’s lack of any sort of neck ring.
As this picture clearly indicated, the only apparent ring is encircling his bill! Gilbert, AZ, USA.

Rocky Labyrinth

As the sun sets, the shadows among the rocks become quite long. Keep your eyes peeled for an animal, hidden in plain sight. City of Rocks State Park, NM, USA.

Saguaro Sunset

Setting between the arms of a large saguaro cactus, the disappearing sun invites many of the desert’s creatures to emerge. Saguaro NP West, AZ, USA.

Sandhill Cranes

These large, incredible birds will overwinter en-masse at a few specific locations across the US. Soon before spring is under way, they disperse to summer breeding grounds. Willcox, AZ.

Scaled Quail

Can you venture a guess at why it’s called a scaled quail? This beautiful fellow and his mate walked right by my camping site, presenting this excellent photo op! Photographed at Rockhound State Park, NM, USA.

Scaly Pholiota

Like any self-respecting hiker, I despise the swarms of mosquitoes that emerge during really wet summers, but as a nature lover, find myself in awe at the vast array of fungi that also appear. This Scaly Pholiata cluster was encountered deep in Bald Eagle State Forest, PA, USA.

Simplicity

Goldfinch on a millet stalk. They love to forage the seeds. I’m quite taken by the simplistic appearance of this shot. Photographed in Michaux State Forest, PA, USA.

Skipper Butterflies

A skipper butterfly prepares to take flight, while it’s comrade contentedly sips at nectar. Photographed in Richmond, VA, USA.

Skipper Tongue

This is what it looks like when a butterfly sticks it’s tongue out at you. Featured is a tiny skipper, enjoying the nectar of the invasive crown vetch plant. Photo taken near Hartleton, PA, USA.

Sleepy Orange Butterfly

Comical though it sounds, “sleepy orange” is their real name. Due to their relaxed demeanor, it suits this butterfly well. Photographed at Lake Roberts, NM, USA.

Snapping Turtle, Snapping

While snapping pictures of this common snapping turtle, I may have been at risk of getting snapped, myself. John Heintz NWR, PA, USA.

Sonoran Snow

Every few years, the valleys surrounding Tucson will receive a gentle dusting of snow. Once in a blue moon, however, snow will actually accumulate, turning this normally hot/dry desert into a winter wonderland. I was extremely fortunate to witness this aberration within 2 months of living here. This photo even managed to capture a few falling snowflakes. Saguaro National Park West.

Sonoran Spring

When certain conditions are met, the desert will briefly become engulfed by poppy flowers. This scene offers a nice look at the poppies, cloaked in the golden hour’s spectacular light! Saguaro National Park West.

Sora

One of the strangest birds you may encounter, meet the Sora. This unusual water bird looks like a cross between a duck and a chicken, and will readily masquerade as either. Photo taken in Tucson, AZ, USA.

Spicebush Swallowtail

The lovely spicebush swallowtail butterfly sips the nectar from an equally lovely pasture thistle flower. Photo taken in Bald Eagle State Forest, PA, USA.

Spiny Lizard Display

Not unlike humans, the male gender of many lizard species are rather territorial. One of the many ways that some lizards (such as this Desert Spiny Lizard) show their bravado is by performing territorial “push-ups.” This fellow’s brazen masculinity made for an excellent photo op! Tucson, AZ, USA.