Sonoma County Water Wishes
Pepperwood Field Trip Results
by Linda Curry
On Sunday, April 6, 20 Audubon members and Greg DeNevers, resident biologistat Pepperwood, had a field trip on a day with scattered clouds and somethreat of rain. The bird species that were observed included a Kite,House Wrens, Acorn Woodpecker, Bluebirds, Mallards, Juncos, White-breastedNuthatch, Orange-crown Warbler, Pileated Woodpecker, Pacific-slope Flycatcher,Anna's Hummingbird, Allen's Hummingbird, Phoebe, American Goldfinch, Robin,Meadowlark, Wrentit, Turkey Vulture, Raven, American Towhee, Western Kingbirdand several Starlings.
Butterfly species included California Ringlet, Azure Blue, and PipevineSwallowtail.
Reptile species included western fence lizards, a western terrestrialgarter snake, and a rattlesnake. Wildflowers observed included hog fennel,forget-me-not, brodia, gumweed, geranium, sky lupine, popcorn, bird's eyegilia, filaree, tomcat clover, evening primrose, creamcups, purple sanicle,woodland star, drosophila, sheep sorral, false baby stars, purple needlegrass, balloon clover, rattlesnake grass, henbit, bleeding hearts, columbines,miner's lettuce and Fremont star lily. Other plants of interest includedbracken fern, goldback fern, maiden hair fern, madrone trees in bloom, blackoak, live oak, valley oak, scrub oak, woodland manzanita, sugar pine anddouglas fir. Shrubs of interest included snowball bush, snowberry, serviceberry, red berry, mountain mahogany, coyote brush, coyote mint, poison oak.
We began at one of the uppermost elevations of Pepperwood and then traversedthrough oak woodlands and meadows, past several ponds and stopped for apicnic near a small rock outcrop on a knoll. After lunch we got back tothe cars and drove to the bottom end of the property to review the differenceof a woodland community without grazing. The difference is shrubbery, lotsof it. We walked up Leslie Creek to see the site of a recent landslide,which had a dramatic impact on the creekbed downstream as compared withthe upstream channel.