Contrast – Desert or Wetland?

I enjoyed a walk this weekend and  marvelled again at the amazing geographic  diversity of the Okanagan Valley. The surrounding hills are draped in snow bringing definition to their contours. Local streams have a crust of ice and beautiful Okanagan Lake has a glorious sheen as the sun slides behind the range of mountains that provide a rain shadow for the communities we live in. We are situated in the most northern end of the Sonora Desert; a semi- arid climate . While the Okanagan Valley is a desert, it also the home of many wetland animals. That is such a contrast isn’t it? How often do we think of a wetland living in a desert?  The Great Basin Spadefoot Toad for example, is an animal that loves the uniqueness of our dry climate but needs water from seasonal ponds and a wetland for a breeding habitat. The Spadefoot is a desert adapted amphibian-very unique and at risk. Our local population of Spadefoots will be hibernating now. Take the kids for a walk. Enjoy the parks and nature walks our communities offer.

trails http://www.biokids.umich.edu/critters/Spea_intermontana/

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