Aldea residents have seen and recorded (via the Birding Group) around 105 species of birds here in our community. Some are year-round residents, some migrants, and others are rare vagabonds, like the surprising Broad-billed Hummingbird who hung around from October through early December 2016. New Mexico has over 500 avian species recorded, so we are doing pretty good here in Aldea as far as listing bird species, especially considering we have no rivers, ponds, high mountains or desert.
Beyond the feathered wildlife, are you curious what fauna and flora might be just outside your door or down in the arroyo nearest you? Arroyos are one of the last unfragmented habitats we have since we can’t build in them. And if anyone saw our arroyos flowing last year in the “1000-Year Event” you know why! [link to video]
Is anyone interested in starting other lists for Aldea—native flowers, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects? Seriously—think about it. And speaking of insects, has anyone noticed fewer bees this year? I have seen far fewer honey bees and native bees than usual. Needless to say, that’s worrisome.
It’s safe to guess that many of us chose to live in Aldea because of the Open Spaces here. Let’s get curious about what lives in these open spaces, what lives or visits our yards in the day or night and twilight times in between. And how do we protect and find balance with these creatures if they scare or disturb us or we find them, for some reason, undesirable?
We are stewards of this beautiful land, our community Open Spaces and our own yards. How will we respond to that responsibility?
By Lonnie Howard