By Scott Shephard
As far as I know, I'm the only one who calls this a "prairie dragon." I'm guessing that the farmer who owns this would be more chagrinned than amused that the "city guy" would look at this and see a dragon. But here's the evidence:
What you are really looking at in this photo is a Valley center pivot irrigation thing. (Sorry, but in spite of an exhaustive 2-minute research attempt, I couldn't find what one of these things is called. Can anyone help?)
Instead of spitting fire, the nozzle you see in the upper left spits water. It brings life and sustenance to the earth, not death and destruction, as a dragon does. And the spiney things (again, I'm no expert) along the prairie dragon's back are little sprinkler heads.
So ends the flight of fancy and the lesson in large scale irrigation. Check out this satellite photo that shows this and the neighboring irrigation devices in the center of the map. The little orange marker is close to where I stood to take the photo The irrigation devices each make a semi-circular pattern, are trained to stop at the road between them and then go the other way.
Don't ask me how they train a Valley center pivot irrigation thing not to cross a road. My guess is that it involves hidden wires and electric shocks
Canon 5DIII 1/250s f/8.0 ISO400 55mm