• Arizona mid March-mid April 2018

    We were in the far SE corner of Arizona...good birding there year-round, plus we were there for the beginning of migration. Besides the magical Montezuma Quail and hummingbirds already posted, we managed to see some other Arizona birds be visiting the usual hotspots and a couple of secret spots we found. Here are just a few of my favorites from that region and time:

    Curve-billed Thrasher

    A feeder bird at our rental vacation home

    The Curve-billed Thrasher has a beautiful, gentle, continuous, clear-noted, smooth song...not raucous like some other thrashers.

    Pyrrhuloxia - I love this exotic bird (at least exotic to a Colorado resident)

    Female Pyyrhuloxia

    Male Pyrruloxia enjoying a little sunbathing

    So relaxed!

    Here he's a little more vigilant

    Vermilion and other Flycatchers


    Female Vermilion

    Cassin's Kingbird


    Mexican Jay

    Mexican Jay differs from Woodhouse Scrub Jay by its lack of black and gray facial markings and by it's bluer back.

    This is an adult male with its black bill and fairly flat head

    This is a juvenile as revealed by his partially pink bill and rounder head

    Canyon and Green-tailed Towhee
    This is a Canyon Towhee - see his chest spot

    The Canyon Towhees seem a bit drab when compared to the elegant Green-tailed Towhees.

    Scott's Oriole

    One of our most favorite moments was when we came upon a birdy watering hole on our own...apparently not advertised among local birders. We always love this kind of experience as it holds the element of surprise and special discovery. We found this Scott's Oriole there. He'd recently come back north to breed in SE Arizona.

    Yellow-rumped Warbler female - common

    Yellow-rumped males - even more common

    Offering a good look at the yellow streak on the head

    Yellow Warbler - plenty of these going through, esp at the San Pedro House woods 

    Painted Redstarts - Not at all hard to see in SE Arizona and a nice one for a Colorado girl. 

    They sing almost constantly which is a big help to those trying to see them

    Virginia's Warbler, back early from wintering grounds like most desert breeders


    This Common Yellowthroat migrant was enjoying one of Paton's new water features

    Ramsey's Canyon had a few warblers moving through. This Black-throated Gray was bathing and drinking in the stream that runs down the canyon.

    Eastern Bluebird - a breeder in SE Arizona

    Verdins and Titmice

    Verdins are best found by listening for their high-pitched "Pip". It says this constantly as it works over the branches of trees.

    This next image clearly shows the rufus shoulder patch, not always easy to see in the field.

    The Bridled Titmouse is very cute and never stops talking.

    He is everywhere in the Black Oaks.

    Javelina - This one stopped by for a seed snack under the feeders at the house we were staying in. Didn't love seeds. Didn't stay long.


    Acorn Woodpeckers are the most common...they are so ubiquitous that telephone poles are very often covered with a heavy grated wire to keep them from setting up a "nut cupboard" in them.


    This is an Arizona Woodpecker which is a brown and white guy.

    And this is a Gila Woodpecker male with his red hat and yellow vent area. I think he may be a first year, because he was not as wary as most I saw.

    This is a Gila female looking comfortable on her post

    Hutton's Vireo - looks a lot like a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, but you can tell by it's hooked vireo bill that it's not..plus it has a chunkier body and slower movements also. Extremely common and easy to see...unlike other vireos.

    I hope you enjoyed Arizona as much as we did.

    France and Italy was great. Postings will commence within 10 days.




  • Comments on this post (5 comments)

    • Jeanne Falletta says...

      Just such a pleasure to see and read about these birds. Sure enjoyed this, thank you.

      June 21, 2018

    • Carol & Phil Clayton says...

      Marvelous…we spent time in Portal area in late April. A great time and we did see the Elegant Trogon…….

      June 21, 2018

    • Karen Palmunen says...

      So very beautiful!

      June 21, 2018

    • Mary C Burger says...

      You bring back great memories of past trips.

      June 21, 2018

    • Becky Beckers says...

      Wonderful sightings – I had only seen the bridled titmouse this spring and summer in our yard. Thank you for posting these Carol!

      June 21, 2018

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