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Sunday, June 7, 2015

The importance of water in the desert

One of the first things we learned when moving here, almost eleven years ago, is the importance of water to stay hydrated.  Everyone here never leaves the house to go anywhere without a bottle of water.  You never know when you could have a flat tire or some other catastrophe, so it’s best to be smart and prepared.

When temperatures reach the nineties and the triple digits here in the summers, every creature must stay hydrated.  This includes all the critters too and not just people.

I remember going to Palm Springs years ago during the summer.  We were sitting outside under a patio with a mister.  The lunch was wonderful and the mist system sure helped but it was still very hot.  The poor birds gathered on the decorative stucco walls surrounding the place, holding their wings out from their bodies and panting in an effort to stay cool.  I tried to find anything that would hold water so I could set some out for them.  Sadly, there was nothing available.  I felt terrible and never forgot that experience.

Today we keep pans of water all over the yard for the birds and other creatures that venture by.  We have to put rocks in all the pans so the wind doesn’t carry them off into the desert.

Our birdbath gets loaded with birds.  They sit in there shoulder-to-shoulder with others lined up waiting for some space to open up so they can get in there and cool off.  All the species get along well here and usually never squabble, although at times a pigeon bully will come by. 

The desert toads venture out late at night, get into the water pans, swim, and hang out.  They can’t come out in the desert heat, so are strictly night visitors and catch moths and other bugs that are active at that time of day.

There are also many lizards (no, not the green ones) and some snakes that come by for a drink and then slither away back into the desert.

Right now, we’re busy watching the baby quail and baby chipmunks passing through with their parents and siblings all day long.  I always keep a camera close by in hopes of getting a great shot.

It definitely takes stamina and skill to survive here and some species thrive.


  1. You should put a webcam on one of those pans of water. Might be interesting to watch.

    1. Liz,

      Good idea. I might do that one of these days when I figure out how to.

      Thanks for leaving a comment. I'm running behind but will be by your blog soon.


  2. That is neat how you keep water out for the living creatures that come your way! So true to stay hydrated in the desert heat!


    1. Betty,

      Thank you. I do what I can for the animals. I feel sorry for them. A desert life is a tough one.

      Thank you for reading and leaving your thoughts.



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