Gila Monster Vs.
your camera at the ready when you walk the trails here at the Arboretum --
Dot Coffey graciously shared the image at right after she saw this feisty
rock squirrel challending a gila monster. This unusual interaction was observed
and photographed July 26 near "Mr. Big," the tallest of all the
Australian trees in our eucalyptus grove.
This isn't the first time a photographer has managed to capture this unusual Arizona scene, though; in 2006 Arboretum Volunteer Tom Keyes took the pictures seen at left and below... also showing a standoff between a defensive reptile and a pugnacious rodent.
Arboretum staff also relate stories about seeing rock squirrels harassing four-foot
western diamondback rattlesnakes, even a six-foot-five-inch gopher snake a couple years back