It all began with photographing the grasses as they look rather wonderful at the moment. There are so many grasses here in the Portugal, so many in fact that my wonderful flora book exclaims ‘it is beyond the scope of this book to describe all the species in the region‘. Fortunately though it lists enough for me to identify most in my gallery.
However as my title indicates it is what is hidden beyond and in the grasses that really caught my eye. I’d been looking out for the Ria Formosa’s miniature dragons for a few days as the current heatwave is perfect for them. So was delighted to have spotted these ones and to have been able to photograph them. Moorish Geckos are never easy to photograph close-up as they are understandably wary of large shapes approaching.
Unlike the ants which are far too busy working to notice us stomping around them. They are not really aliens of course, but when I was photographing them close up it was a scene from a science fiction film that popped into my head! Ants are great consumers of grass seed, and as I discovered as well as collecting those that have fallen they also harvest the seed directly from the grass. And they consume all types making them amazing seed dispensers. They are also superb at aerating the soil so look after those ants you have in your garden.
The Ria Formosa ants all seem very busy at the moment collecting grass seeds, and everywhere we walk to see trails of them. Some of the trails are so long and wide they have created their own paths in the undergrowth. I couldn’t resist taking a few videos. I thought though you’d be happy with just the one!
PS This rather random post all came about because it is St George’s Day today and so dragons popped into my head. I always remember St George’s Day as my Birthday is squeezed in between this day and the Queen’s actual birthday. I know the things one has in one’s head! Unfortunately St George’s Day is no longer a national holiday in England, nor would it appear to a major feast day in Portugal where St George is also the Patron Saint. However whilst I may not have any festivals to share with you, St George has given me a great excuse to talk about dragons following on from my mention of superheroes last week.