SciSun: I’m on my way….to Cal-i-for-ni-ay   Leave a comment

This is a Colorado Desert fringe-toad lizard.   His scientific name is Uma notata.    

Thank you to USBLM

Uma notata. NOT Uma Thurman

Pretty fancy name, isn’t it. In fact, he’s too fancy for Colorado, despite his name; he’s actually from California and that’s the only place he lives. You see, just because the name of an animal or plant might  make you think it’s from a certain area, sometimes it’s the name that’s misplaced and not the animal.

Fringy-toe here is only found in the Colorado Desert, not in Colorado the state. Colorado is actually a Spanish word that means red. The Colorado Desert isn’t exactly red, but in the right light it can sometimes seem kinda red-ish. The Colorado River, though, actually  is rusty-red because of all the sediment – mud – that it picks up as it flows through Arizona, which has a lot of red soil. And yet Arizona  was not named Colorado. And there is no Spanish word for Arizona. No wonder Mr Fringe is confused.

There are lots of great places to learn more about Southwestern deserts and the plants and animals that live there.   Here are a few to get you started:

http://www.desertmuseumdigitallibrary.org/kids/Browse/Reptiles/English/Colorado_desert_fringe-toed_lizard.html

 http://www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/WAP/region-colorado.html

 http://www.californiadesert.gov/resources.php?code=noralg



Posted January 1, 2012 by ECOVIA eco-adventure® in SciSun

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