Nightfall at the Osoyoos Desert Centre

The sun sets behind the mountains above the Osoyoos Desert Centre. (© Richard McGuire photo)

The Osoyoos Desert Centre is a protected island of endangered antelope brush habitat on 67 acres outside Osoyoos.

The interpretive nature facility provides a 1.5-km boardwalk taking visitors into the dry, shrub-grassland sometimes referred to as a “pocket desert.”

Last month I took one of the evening tours when animals are often more visible than they are in the hot daytime.

The Desert Centre remains open until early October. Check my stream for earlier photos I took there in a previous spring when flowers abound.

(Richard McGuire photos)

A young buck deer at the Osoyoos Desert Centre is well camouflaged among the sagebrush, antelope brush and tall grass. Animals are often more active in the evening. Although night tours at the centre concluded last week, the days are getting shorter. (© Richard McGuire photo)

This small species of prickly pear cactus is native to the South Okanagan and is often seen growing at the Osoyoos Desert Centre. It’s much smaller than the cacti seen growing in other areas, such as the U.S. Southwest or Mexico. But brush against it when you’re walking and it can stick to you and give you great respect for it. (© Richard McGuire photo)

A Nuttall’s cottontail freezes among the grass when it perceives a predator. (© Richard McGuire photo)

Sagebrush (left) and antelope brush (background) are some of the main vegetation preserved at the Osoyoos Desert Centre. There’s very little left of this environment that is unique in Canada as much of the surrounding land is farmed or otherwise developed. (© Richard McGuire photo)

Antelope brush grows on a hillside at the Osoyoos Desert Centre along with other plants unique to this arid corner of Canada. There are also non-native grasses that were introduced when the land was used for grazing. (© Richard McGuire photo)

An antelope brush reaches for the sky. (© Richard McGuire photo)

The South Okanagan’s endangered antelope brush habitat is unique in Canada. (© Richard McGuire photo)

Antelope brush rises from non-native grass at the Osoyoos Desert Centre. The air is thick with smoke from burning wildfires in other parts of B.C. (© Richard McGuire photo)

Antelope brush spreads out at the roots with the same plant often covering a larger area. In the spring it is covered with a small yellow flower. (Richard McGuire photo)

I spotted this flowering plant growing at the Osoyoos Desert Centre. (© Richard McGuire photo)

About Richard McGuire

Richard McGuire is a photographer and photojournalist based in Osoyoos in the South Okanagan region of British Columbia, Canada.

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