Eli Phillips - East Valley Tribune: Centennial Essays

Eli Phillips

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Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2011 10:25 am | Updated: 11:12 am, Fri Apr 29, 2011.

Ever thought about taking a vacation to Arizona? Well if not, here are some reasons why you might want to. I’m proud to live in Arizona because you can be swimming in one area of the state while later playing in the snow near Flagstaff. I love the diverse population of flora and fauna (flora: animals; fauna: plants). The climate is wonderful here because it is almost always different.

One reason I love Arizona is because of the diverse population of animals that live here, such as javelinas, scorpions, and spiders. Some birds in Arizona are the red tailed hawk, the greater roadrunner, the turkey vulture, and the most important of them all, the cactus wren. One fish is the Apache trout, which is the state fish. Some mammals like the mountain lion and the gray fox live here as well. I especially love the mammals because they are somewhat like us since they give live birth and care for their young (well, most of the time).

The plant life here is extraordinary because like the animals it is quite diverse. We have cacti here in Arizona, as well as trees, shrubs, ground cover, vines, succulents, grasses, perennials, and annuals. You can drink from or eat some plants but don’t try to drink cactus juice because it is very bad for you and it is very acidic. I love the Devil’s Claw the best because the prongs grab on to passing animals and that disperses their seeds. When the animal dies, the seeds hit the ground and sometimes use the dead animal’s body as a type of fertilizer.

Well, you see the climate here is usually dry because we live in a desert. It is better to live in a dry place than a humid area because then you don’t have to get wet all the time. I personally love warm and comfortable Arizona rather than humid Washington. I’m proud our climate is how it is or else Arizona wouldn’t be such a great state.

I’m very proud to be an Arizonan and maybe in the future you will be too. I think after this you might want to spend your next vacation in Arizona and enjoy all this and more. You will find it a wonderful place to learn about the spectacular climate, the wildlife and much, much more. So that is why I’m proud to be an Arizonan.

• Eli Phillips, 4th grade, Centennial Elementary, Gilbert

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