Monday, March 12, 2012

Birds, glorious birds, part 2

Birding is relaxing when you do armchair birding like I normally do, but there's also the thrill of the "hunt" too. Son1, especially now that he's keeping a life list, is eager to see his first of each species. AZ did not disappoint.

Here the guys are consulting the Kaufman bird guide (Son1's favorite) after we spotted the Vermilion Flycatcher:
Next along the path, we saw a Canvasback:
A group of them, in fact. A raft of them??
At Ramsey Canyon Preserve, an Arizona Woodpecker:
Bridled Titmice are so hard to photograph due to their constant (hyper)activity.
This curious mule deer wasn't too afraid of people.
It was weird seeing succulents like agave plants right next to a cool weather plant like a fern on the trail at Ramsey:
Back at the visitor center, we found this fellow. Anyone know what kind of lizard it is?
On the way out of Carr Canyon, we saw a Red-naped Sapsucker.
While lunching at the Sierra Vista Environmental Operations Park, we were joined by a Loggerhead Shrike, hubby's favorite bird.
On our last day in AZ, we were debating whether to stop at Saguaro National Park because we were running short on time. Boy, are we glad we did. Here are just some of the birds we saw:

Gila Woodpecker
Canyon Towhee
Black-throated Sparrow
Anyone want a Black-chinned Sparrow to go with the Black-throated Sparrow? This was an exciting find for Son1.
I was more excited about the Cactus Wren since I think wrens are some of the cutest birds around.
Son1 thinks this is a Clay-colored Sparrow:
You just can't take Gambel's Quails seriously; they look like little jesters.
This Pyrrhuloxia was a bit of a beggar. He must have been hanging around the picnic area too much and is used to being fed.
And last, but not least, is the Curve-billed Thrasher, a bold looking bird with brilliant yellow eyes. If I had one for a pet (which I thoroughly frown upon; I don't condone keeping wild birds for pets), I'd name it Data. ;)
Next blog post, I'll have a few pictures of the AZ landscape. Gotta milk the trip for all its worth!

Did you see any exciting birds in your neck of the woods this past week? Do you have Spring migrants passing through yet?

"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be." ~ Douglas Adams


Stacy Davis said...

WOW!! Gorgeous pictures!!!!

Ps. I totally see the resemblance to's kind of unsettling actually...:P

Nan said...

Love the bird photos! Will look for them as we arrive in AZ. I believe that I need to start a new Pinterest board! By the way. What was the bird Scott identified? Inquiring minds.....

Epicure68 said...

I love the quail. And the lizard, they are so cute. I think ds1 needs to trade in all his LEGO for a telephoto lens so that he can take really great closeups of the birds.

Sara said...

You really did see some great birds! Even though your pictures make me feel a little homesick, I love looking at them. I'm looking forward to your landscape shots. :)

Maureen said...

I can't believe how many birds you were able to see in one place. I've never heard of "hunting" bird watching. I wouldn't even know where to begin to go track down certain birds. I guess that requires more knowledge and experience. You saw some beautiful birds. I love quails - they are the one animal that I truly miss from living in San Diego. When they go running through your yard with all their babes in tow, it is too cute!

MyKidsEatSquid said...

That sounds like a great trip. I must say I find agave plants fascinating--they can be used for so many things, from food to paper to pens, really amazing

Under the Willow said...

These are such wonderful pictures! Each bird is so unique-thank you for sharing!

Name: Holly Bowne said...

Okay, this time my favorites are the super sweet mule deer and the cool lizard shot. And unfortunately no, I have no idea what kind of lizard that is!