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The San Dieguito River Park
18372 Sycamore Creek Rd.
Escondido, CA 92025
Phone: (858) 674-2270
Fax: (858) 674-2280



Join the San Dieguito River Park mailing list
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The River Park has converted from a print-based distribution system to a web-based system. If you are interested in receiving e-mail notices when the quarterly activity schedule is posted to the website, and news of special events occurring in the Park, click above to send us an e-mail.

Robyn Waayers' Nature Notebook

Welcome to Robyn Waayers' Nature Notebook. Robyn is a local biologist and nature photographer. This page will be gradually expanded to provide information about the animals, plants and fungi of the San Dieguito River Park. Check back for new information.

Above - Robyn collecting bugs in the desert
Below - Robyn examining bugs attracted to her blacklight

Robyn has been a resident of San Diego County since 1977, and is a biology instructor at Palomar, Miramar and Southwestern Colleges, and is also a freelance nature photographer. Contact information:


California Ground Squirrel

Birds (These were all taken with a Minolta X-700 SLR (non-digital). Tokina 60-300 mm zoom and a Bogen tripod.)

California Gnatcatcher
Black-Necked Stilt
Snow Geese
Black Crowned Night Heron
Great Egret
Mourning Dove

Reptiles and Amphibians

Pacific Tree Frog
Coast Horned Lizard
California King Snake
Western Toad

Insects and other Arthropods

Tarantula Hawk Wasp
Ten-lined June Beetle
Sacken's Velvet Ant
Tule Billbug
Masked Chafer

Plant Communities


Flat-Top Buckwheat


Shaggy Mane Mushrooms
Jack O'Lantern Mushrooms
Black Elfin Saddle







Contributions by Robyn Waayers, unless indicated otherwise.

Here's a new entry:. The photo would be better given to you directly, as it
will take forever to send with our dial-up.

California Ground Squirrel, Spermophilus beecheyi

California Ground Squirrels are abundant throughout the San Diegito River
Park anywhere where there is soil suitable for burrowing in. Colonies create
extensive underground burrows, which can be destructive if located near human-made
structures! Generally, a single squirrel, often an older female, will act as
sentry for the colony and position herself in a prominent position outside the
burrow system watching for predators or other threats. When she detects a
threat, she will make a series of high-pitched squeaks to alert other
colony-mates who may be nearby and vulnerable. The sentry is usually an older female as
she has likely already had one of more litters of offspring and so is
biologically "expendable." If she is taken by a predator, her genes, as carried by her
offspring, will "live on."









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