Another visit to Reba and Uma’s home in Sonora finds the two remaining peachicks almost grown and doing very well. Uma served as surrogate mother to two of the abandoned peachicks and they seem to regard her as their real mother, following her everywhere and waiting outside the screen door to come indoors. Since they are not housebroken, they are not welcomed, but manage to sneak in sometimes anyhow. Lady Bird has started strutting a full display of her feathers, even though she is a peahen, while Lyndon Bird, the male peacock, does not have his tail feathers yet to offer a counter dance. Click to see them last year when they were still babies. There is still a flock of adult peacocks and peahens and another flock or two of wild turkeys who guard the house and spend most nights roosting in nearby trees. When we arrived home last night from dinner, they were already settled in, but greeted us with a very loud chorus of braying and gobbles.
The recent forest fires have left their mark and also cleared space for an amazing display of wild flowers. Driving back to Fresno on SR49 through the Sierra foothills and the old gold rush territory from Sonora was a delight! It was like taking a hike on an alpine trail only in the comfort of an air conditioned car with wild flowers everywhere. The photos cannot capture how beautiful it was high above the Merced River. Meadows were blanketed with white and purple lupines (Lupinus), white Mariposa lilies (Calochortus), yellow California poppies (Eschscholzia californica), red Indian paintbrushes (Castilleja linariifolia), and many other wild flowers.