Friday, July 15, 2011

Foto Friday - Flora and Fauna

I'm back! Yes my family and I took a 3,000 mile journey from the Texas gulf coast to the
suburbs of Chicago and back again and we just returned last weekend. I really thought that I could get a
Foto Friday finished and posted, but who was I kidding.
It. Just. Didn't. Happen....
Five of our eleven days were spent in the car, but I really do prefer driving to flying. It allows us the freedom of our own schedule since we're always late, and the spontaneity of stopping somewhere for a little adventure. And I do love adventures!

This week it's a little flora and fauna from our trip. Latin in origin, the word flora means the
goddess of plants and flowers and fertility, and fauna in Roman mythology is the sister
of Faunes, a good spirit of the forest and plains.

I'm not usually an early riser by nature, at least not without an alarm, but most of the days
I was up early so I took advantage of the beautiful morning light and off I went
with my camera:

This one was actually taken in the evening, and I love the veil of light!

Not sure what this one is, but it reminds me of the fireworks on the 4th of July.

This is lavender and was taken in my mom's garden in the evening.

No clue what this is, anyone?

I really enjoyed walking through the neighborhood as nearly everyone had something planted
in their yards. I think gardening can be contagious. . . .

On our way home we went through Oklahoma and stopped at Arbuckle Wilderness,  a 400 plus acre park
set in the oak thickets in the beautiful Arbuckle mountains. It took us about 2 hours to drive through the park. We have been through the park several times before, but probably not in the dead heat of the summer, which might not be the ideal time to go. And although we did see many different animals, they just didn't seem to be in abundance on this particular day. There are ususally many giraffes that will
come to the side of the fence and eat from the food cups, we only saw one and this animal whisperer
couldn't convince him that my food was better than his. It was disappointing...

This was one of our first beggars visitors.

Have you ever seen a white deer before?

They were so very sweet, coming right to the car for a snack...

And then there were some that, well, know how to work the system! lol

I was standing through the sunroof when this guy came over . . . which can sometimes
be a problem.....especially when they are taller than you! They can be a little well,
pesky, but they do have a nice set of eyelashes.

This is a beautiful 12 point buck - and unfortunately I didn't get a good photo of his rack!

Some kind of gazelle . . . I was so engrossed in the animals that I paid no attention to the signs.

For most of the 2 hour trip through the park I stood on the two front seats and out through the sunroof, imagining that I was on safari on the Serengeti plains in Tanzania, with the wind whipping through my hair and on an adrenaline rush as we were chased by elephants . . .  hey a girl can dream, right?   

And then . . . it came to an end, but not before we would use the last of our food to feed the Canada goose. We stopped the car and there was an immediate stampede of turtles from the water. Yes, even turtles can be trained . . .

Most people when they think of flora and fauna probably just think simply flowers and animals. But
how many of us think synonymously of flora and fauna; we can't live without them? The truth is, we can't.
Back to basic earth science when we were kids we learned that the flora produces oxygen that is
breathed by the fauna, which exhales carbon dioxide that the flora needs to live.
It seems simple enough, but it's not. They are dependent on each other for their very survival and we can't live without either one of them. Period.
The worlds ecology is fragile and when one disturbance or catastrophe of our flora and fauna
 happens in just one place of our world it can and does affect our entire planet. Half of our planets oxygen comes from land and the other half comes from our oceans in the process of photosynthesis from phytoplankton , a one-celled plant that lives on the surface. 

Conservation of our biologically diverse flora and fauna both on land and in our oceans is vital and leads to the continuation of our food chains and to the survival of humanity. I'm wondering if perhaps mankind has forgotten this seemingly simple but complex existence with nature and that when we destroy the environment we are ultimately destroying ourselves.

I feel privileged to own a device called a camera, that allows me breathtaking moments while capturing nature in time, and even more blessed that you are here to share it with.

 . . . and now I feel the need to go plant something!

Have a wonderful weekend - take some time to enjoy the goddess and good spirit.

Love, Kim

Linked up here with Andi at the hollie rogue for photo friday.


Dyche Designs said...

Sounds like you had an amazing trip even with all the driving. Love all your shots but especially the animal ones, you really captured their characters.

andi said...

wow, looks like an amazing trip! there are too many pictures that are my favorite, but those lashes and that "fireworks flower"---so great! thanks for linking back and glad you had a fun time~

Leslie Todd said...

You have some really great pictures! The trip sounds like lots of fun. I prefer driving to flying too.

Rosemary Aubut said...

Wow what a post! Especially love the eyelash photos!

Dreaming Hollow Photography said...

Wow! Those photos are just plain wonderful! I photograph people most of the time but your florals and animal shots inspire me to try more of this kind of photography! Would be fun to photograph a flower for a little change of pace instead of chasing a wild toddler AROUND the flowers! Ha! Thanks for sharing!

JeNeal said...

These are awesome I love them!

SKC said...

Welcome back. Fabulous images.

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