Honeybee on Buckwheat, Culp Valley


Where are the Peninsular Bighorn Sheep? That's the common question visitors ask. Some people have visited the desert for years before seeing a sheep. Some people see them on their first visit.

It's good remember that sheep will come down to desert streams to drink, but they prefer high ground. Sheep are comfortable in front of steep mountains with rocks and boulders where if necessary they can outrun predators. When driving to Borrego Springs from the west on S-22, look for the rockiest mountains. In the Borrego Valley, watch Coyote Creek and the stream in Borrego Palm Canyon.

Insects have their favorite desert plants, especially plants of the sunflower and pea families. And don't forget that lizards and snakes like to eat insects. Late in the spring, milkweed plants attract some of the desert's most colorful insects. Look for Rush Milkweed, White-Stem Milkweed, and Desert Milkweed.

Here are some favorite places for birding in Anza-Borrego North:

Lower Willows — At the north end of DiGoirgio Road, take the Coyote Canyon Jeep Trail to the north end of Desert Gardens and walk northwest along Coyote Creek.

Clark Valley — Take Rockhouse Canyon Road to the mesquite around Clark Dry Lake.

Borrego Valley — Swainson's Hawkwatch. Annually from approximately Feb. 15 to Apr. 15. Watch the ABDNHA Web site for details.

Recommended reading: Guide to Birds of the Anza-Borrego Desert by Barbara W. Massey.