White-faced ibises (Plegadis chihi) lift off from a temporary pond in the Owens Valley.

Ceal Klingler (ceal.klingler[at]gmail.com) is a writer, biologist, conservationist, and devoted terrestrial mammal. Her work has appeared in, among other places, High Country News, The Sun, Backpacker, Natural History, and Orion (e.g., “How to Save a Pupfish,” “Air Space“). She received the Waterston Desert Writing Prize in 2021 and a special recognition grant for writing on water from the Ellen Meloy Fund for Desert Writers in 2016. She has also ghostwritten hundreds of pages of comments on thousands of pages of technical documents that probably very few people read and likely none enjoyed. She is writing a book about how desert animals (including humans) and other organisms live together.

Ceal, who feels awkward writing about herself in the third person, lives off the grid (on solar power) with her husband, their dogs, and an assortment of wild neighbors. She runs, walks, skis, and sometimes crutches thousands of miles each year in the Sierra Nevada, Great Basin, and Mojave mountains and deserts, the homelands of the Nüümü, Newe, and Timbisha peoples.

(Ceal catches up with tiger beetles after an injury.)