• Rainbow over Half Dome

    Yosemite

    National Park California

Wildlife and Other Sightings: Western Whiptail, Gilbert's Skink....

August 04, 2012 Posted by: PU - Mather District Interpretive Ranger

Western Whiptail
Aspidoscelis tigris
    
Western Whiptail

July 25, 2012
Hetch Hetchy

Western Whiptails were active along the trail from O'Shaughnessy Dam to Wapama Falls from 9:30 to 11:45AM. These lizards are more commonly observed in open habitat, running from bush to bush.


Gilbert's Skink
Plestidon gilberti
   
Gilbert's Skink

July 25, 2012
Hetch Hetchy

This lizard is most often heard before it is seen. They are excellent leaf litter "swimmers." In quiet moments, listen for feint rustling in the leaf litter (most commonly oak).  They will periodically peek their heads out for a look on the surface. This individual was observed close to the picnic tables near the rest rooms at Hetch Hetchy. A blue-tailed juvenile was observed cruising in the leaf litter near Hodgdon Meadow employee housing.

Black Bear
Ursus americanus
    
Bear scat

July 25, 2012
Hetch Hetchy

Fresh scat filled with Manzanita seeds was observed on the trail between O'Shaughnessy Dam and Wapama Falls.

wildlife




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Did You Know?

Nevada and Vernal Falls

In Yosemite Valley, dropping over 594-foot Nevada Fall and then 317-foot Vernal Fall, the Merced River creates what is known as the “Giant Staircase.” Such exemplary stair-step river morphology is characterized by a large variability in river movement and flow, from quiet pools to the dramatic drops of the waterfalls themselves.