It gets really contrasty in the desert at night.
It was really windy that year.
The most dramatic part of the cactus show is when the music reaches a crescendo, the fan dancers move aside, and the lead singer prances out – owning the stage in prickly glory.
Even though it knows all the answers, no one ever calls on the cactus.
I don’t think bird feet have any nerves in them at all.
When you produce a flower larger as you are tall, you might be compensating for something …
In this case, they’re compensating for the fact that an arid climate has fewer pollinators to attract.
In Arizona, as in Minnesota, they turn on the heaters when they expect people to be outside when it’s cold.
We just differ a bit about on what constitutes “cold” … by about 50 degrees F.
Sometimes you see a bee and just have an infrared camera with you.
Sometimes that works out.
The second invasion was more successful. Instead of blinding the humans, they came at night, armed and armored. Those that ran, tripped and were skewered. Those that fought, fell beneath the onslaught of spines and ever marching roots. The bullets did not stop them, flesh healing over into hardened knots, protecting them againt further violation. They were impervious to drought, to heat. And, as the humans made their planet ever warmer, eventually the next generation of triffids ruled over all.
When you pluck the needles of a cactus, they make very light pinging sounds that can be heard clearly in the desert still. For some strange reason, playing the cactus harp never really caught on amongst the native peoples.
As dusk falls, and the last gleam of the setting sun casts itself over the desert, cactus wrens tell their hatchlings bedtime stories and hope that the rains will fall before they fledge.