It's funny that I see so many large mammals on a daily basis, and yet, we saw very few when we went camping this weekend at Alva Lake. I mentioned in my last post that Rick saw a mountain lion for a brief second as we were driving. It was eating from a carcass near the road, but ran off as soon as it heard our van. I was looking back a bit because I thought I had seen a moose, so I missed seeing it. Major bummer.
We did see some osprey, white-tailed deer, and a very large crane or heron. I didn't get any pictures of those, unfortunately, but I did get some of the little critter creatures. The first picture here is what I think is a banded damselfly. I always get damselflies confused with dragonflies, so please correct me if I'm wrong. They were all over the place, and at one point, I had two on my kayak paddle. One of them flew off and landed on my arm, where it stayed long enough for me to take a couple of pictures.
The second picture is what I think is an alpine peaclam. They were all over the lake, so the boys had fun finding those. Some were empty, but others had creatures living in them. There was also some sort of fresh water snail, but I didn't get any pictures of those shells. That will teach me for forgetting my water camera. The picture above is of a bumblebee that landed on our kayak.
Believe it or not, but the picture above is not just some grass growing out of the water. That picture has a turtle in it, although it's very hard to see. It was swimming in and out of the grass and I couldn't get a clear shot of it. I don't know what type it is, to be honest. It could be a pond turtle, snapping turtle, painted turtle, red-eared slider, or something else. I was scaring it enough as it is, so I decided to back off and didn't get the best picture. When I first saw it, all I saw was a swoop motion of something brown. We were standing next to a beaver dam, so that's what I thought it was at first. Nope ... just a turtle.
The picture above is some sort of wasp or yellow jacket. I'm not sure which one. I started to take pictures of it, but then Rick called me over to photograph the bumblebee. This was when we were on the little island in the middle of Alva Lake. There were tons of insects on that place. I thought the mosquitoes would be really bad this time of year, but we didn't see too many of them. There were some nasty flies though. They were the type of flies that bite and draw blood. I got some painful bites from those stupid things.
The last picture is of a crayfish, or crawdad, whichever term you prefer. These are all over the lakes, ponds, and streams here. The boys love catching them. This particular one had an attitude though and kept walking up to Rick to try to get his feet. Crazy little things.