Chiricahua Mtns 2014
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Chiricahua Mtns Road Trip Spring 2014: Scenic Landscapes (2)
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Lordsburg, New Mexico

The late afternoon sun was blotted out by a huge dust storm. On a previous day, the busy Interstate 10 was closed due to zero visibility. This produced a mass exodus of cars and trucks for nearby motels.

Sunset from my campsite at the Hampton Inn.

This sign was posted on the window of a Lordsburg gas station. If it refers to rolling your tongue into a U-shape, once thought to be caused by a dominant gene, there is no genetic basis for this trait in human populations (according to Journal of Heredity Vol. 66: 179-180, 1975). The attendant had no idea why the sign was placed on their window, so I gave my introductory Biology 100 lecture anyway. See Exercise #4 "Genetics Laboratory" in: Biology Laboratory Manual & Workbook (Fifth Edition). Burgess International Group, Inc., 1988.

Tongue Roller and Non-Tongue Roller
(Click On Image To See Explanation)
I used the tongue-rolling demonstration for many years in my general biology genetics laboratories at Palomar College. Based on the Journal of Heredity, it probably is not a good example of simple Medelian genetics, although our discussions of the adaptive advantage of tongue-rolling was quite fascinating.

     Click Left Image To See Explanation By Dr. John H. McDonald,
        Department of Biological Sciences, University of Delaware.

Chiricahua Mtns: Cave Creek Canyon

Chiricahua Mtns: South Cave Creek

Image From Wikimedia
The incredibly beautiful Elegant Trogon (Trogon elegans) was spotted at this very site by a number of birders during my May 2014 visit; however, I must confess that I did not observe this exquisite bird. I suppose this is not unusual since I spent most of the time looking down at plants and insects. I didn't even hear the Trogan's distinctive call. I was especially fascinated by the marvelous root parasite called cancer root or squaw root (Conopholis mexicana) with its beautiful yellow flower stalks coming up under oak trees. Please refer to the plant species section (Part 5).

One of the many white-tailed deer in this beautiful canyon.