Photos of Our Local Wildlife!

 

Get Local Wildlife Information

Many of our resident have been fortunate enough and fast enough to snap some nice photos of the many varieties of interesting wildlife that wanders and blooms throughout our community. If you would like to submit some of your photos for inclusion in our website please contact us. Click the pic below to view larger photos.

 

Baby Doves
Baby Doves with Momma in nest
Coopers Hawk in tree
Chuckawalla
Chuckawalla
Chuckawalla
Tarantula Spider
Tarantula Spider
Bobcat
Bobcat
Cactus Bloom
Cactus Bloom
Cactus Bloom
Prickly Pear Cactus Bloom
Saguaro Cactus Bloom
         

Wildlife Information

Gold Canyon is a beautiful place to live. With the Superstition Mountains so close by, we see a lot of amazing wildlife strolling through The Casas all year long. Some even making their homes along side us.

What are most prevalent within our community are the Desert Cottontail rabbits, Gambel's Quail, and Mourning Doves. But we have a lot of other creatures who are not always out in the open but always present. Geckos, Desert Whiptails, Yarrow's Spineys, and a many other reptiles can be seen scurrying over rocks and under cacti. The majority of the wildlife here is harmless, but there are a few creatures to watch out for.

Scorpions

There are several variety of scorpions that can be found in the Sonoran Desert, however only two have venomous stings. The Bark Scorpion and the Giant Hairy Scorpion are the two you want to avoid. The Bark Scorpion is by far the most prevalent and makes it's homes in rock and wood piles. If you are stung by either of these contact Poison Control for assistance. The very young and the elderly should seek medical attention immediately if stung. The Windscorpion and the Tail-less Whipscorpion may look formidable but are not venomous

 

Spiders

Among the many varieties of spiders here in the desert there are 3 varieties that cause the most trouble. The Western Black Widow spider has a poisonous bite that will require medical attention. Black Widows are not always black, but they will always have the tell tale hour class marking on their underbelly. The hourglass can range in shade from yellow to red. The Fiddle-Back spider, known also as the Violin spider or Brown Recluse, are not usually aggressive but do have a venomous bite which will require medical attention as well. These unfriendly arachnids make their homes in woodpiles, ground litter, and even clothing piles. So avoid letting laundry pile up without giving it a good shaking out. Lastly is the Desert Tarantula. Although, by far the largest of the three troublemakers, the Tarantula is the least likely to cause trouble. In fact, they are often kept as pets. They rarely bite but can release tiny irritating hairs on the backs when bothered. Remember, if you are bite by a spider, try and bring the little guy along with you when you seek medical attention so your physician can properly prescribe treatment.

 

Snakes & Lizards

The Western Coral snake can be mistaken for the Milk or King snake (which are not venomous) because of their bright red, black, and white bands, but there is an easy way to spot the difference. "Red and yellow, kill a fellow; red and black, friendly jack". In the Western Coral snake color bands, the black and red bands do not meet. They are always separated by a white or yellowish band in between. Although bites from this desert dweller are rare, they can be fatal, so seek medical attention immediately if you believe you've been bitten. Sidewinders and Western Diamondbacks as well as a variety of less common Rattlesnakes warrant caution as well. Most often, rattlers will alert you to their presence with a rapid shake of their tails. Most bites happen when man and snake simply stumble upon one another unexpectedly. So remember to watch where you step when climbing or hiking and listen closely for their warning sounds. Some rattlesnake bites are more dangerous than others, some even fatal, but as a general rule, always seek medical attention if bitten. The only venomous lizard to be wary of is the Gila Monster. If you manage to catch site of this slow moving lizard, always maintain a safe distance. The are unmistakable with their bright red, orange, yellow, and even pinkish markings.

 

Four Legged Fellows

They can be heard howling and yipping beginning at dusk and through the night. These hearty and highly adaptable wild dogs are a common site in our area. Over the years, the Coyote has learned to live among it human neighbors. They are of little or no threat to us, but can be a threat to smaller animals, particularly house pets, such as cats and small dogs. It is a good idea to keep pets indoors when unattended by their owners. Cats disappear in frequently, as do small stray dogs. Do not feed or attempt to approach coyotes at any time. It is unsafe for you and harmful for the coyotes as well. They are wild animals and should be treated as such. Javelina, or wild boars, can be seen occasionally wandering through the area. Always maintain a safe distance as javelina with young can be very aggressive towards humans and other animals. Their sharp tusks and teeth can cause serious wounds to both people and animals. Bobcats make their homes nearby as well and, although rarely spotted, can quickly take small pets as prey. Lastly and far more illusively are Mountain Lions. Yes, residents have reported sightings of these large cats over the years, here, in our community. They, like Bobcats are very shy of humans, and if you should ever have the opportunity to see one, consider yourself lucky. They can be very dangerous, and should be treated with tremendous caution, as fatal attacks have occurred in other areas of the state. Long periods of drowt can often drive these big cats into more populated areas in search of food and water.

 

Predatory Birds

Lastly, there are a wide array of predatory birds in the area. Large and powerful Hawks, Eagles, Falcons, and Owls nest and hunt here and in the nearby terrain. Small pets have been reportedly taken from patios when left unattended. Again, we encourage all residents and guest to make their beloved pets, indoor pets.

 

On a final note, the desert and its wildlife are overwhelmingly more beautiful then dangerous, when treated with respect. Remember, the same thorny cactus that you bump into in Summer will offer amazing blooms to you in Spring. If you would like to contribute photos or information to this webpage, please email us with your suggestions.

 

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