Thursday, May 7, 2015

Tucson–Day 2–Saguaro National Park and Sonora Desert Museum

Our second day in Tucson we took off for another day full of exploring.  We only have three days here so trying to make the most we can of it. 

Saguaro National Park is one of those parks that you drive through and it isDSCN1529 truly amazing.  There are two visitors center so no matter which side you enter the park you will get the information you need.  The Saguaros were beginning to bloom so they were really neat and of course just the desert landscape is something really amazing. 

The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is also located within the national park and you talk about a place that was fantastic, this place is.  There is so much to see and do you could easy spend two days.  You must remember that you are not in a zoo and you could come in contact with live desert wildlife though.  The area is a natural desert nature area divided in sections and the most dangerous of the desert wildlife are protected for you and their safety.  There are live animal presentation by trained staff and there are tours with trained personnel.  You are allowed to explore the area freely though so be prepared (comfortable shoes and water)  if you plan to explore yourself.  There are lots of activities for kids regardless of the age.  All areas of the desert are covered from the Riparian, Canyons, Grasslands,Gila Monster Woodlands, Birds, to the different reptiles, invertebrates and amphibians to the mining areas to the weather conditions.  It is a must see if you are in the area!!!  Oh there are snack areas, restaurants and lots of gift shops also.

Any idea what this creature is??  Fred and I were amazed by them as they looked like wasp but with red wings.  After talking to one of the staff members, we were shocked.  This is what is called a tarantula hawk.  They are spider wasp that hunt tarantulas and will lay their eggs inside them.  Then with the eggs hatch the larvae feed on the live tarantulas avoiding vial organs so the tarantulas continues to live until they reached maturity.  They can sting and their sting is consider one of the most painful but it is will not last long.  They are the state insect of New Mexico.  It is amazing what little things you learn at places like this!