Today I had an enjoyable day in and around Madera Canyon with Kristen Heimerl of Cincinnati, Ohio. We found nine hummingbird species among other exciting highlights.
As is often the case, a few PURPLE MARTINS were flitting over the desert along I-19 south of Tucson. The desert to the west of Continental School had BLACK-THROATED and RUFOUS-WINGED SPARROWS, COSTA’S HUMMINGBIRD, a couple of migrant TREE SWALLOWS, BLUE GROSBEAKS and the usual desert species.
CASSIN’S and BOTTERI’S SPARROWS were up and singing around milepost nine, while a presumably breeding LOGGERHEAD SHRIKE there was my third this month.
Between Proctor Road and Whitehouse Picnic Area we found BLACK-CHINNED SPARROW, SUMMER TANAGER and recently fledged PAINTED REDSTART.
There was a good selection of wildlife in general throughout the canyon.
We found a dragonfly which turned out to be a new one for me, a Spot-winged Glider.
Madera Kubo Cabins had a nice selection of birds, including BERYLLINE and VIOLET-CROWNED HUMMINGBIRDS, SUMMER and HEPATIC TANAGERS, BRONZED COWBIRD, BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAKS and PLUMBEOUS VIREO. A bit like buses, after waiting for nine years to see one, I saw my second BLACK BEAR of the month, another one-year-old. It ambled across the road right in front of us as we walked uphill from Kubo. It was soaking wet, having taken a bath in the few pools of water along the otherwise dry creek.
We stopped briefly at Chuparosa Inn. As we pulled up we were shown two BLACK-TAILED RATTLESNAKES right by the road, which was thrilling. I got lots of photos which I have included in a separate blog post .
We added a fine male LUCIFER HUMMINGBIRD, along with an equally dapper SCOTT’S ORIOLE. The other hummingbirds present were BROAD-BILLED, BROAD-TAILED, BLACK-CHINNED, MAGNIFICENT and RUFOUS. Thanks Luis!
On the way back out of the canyon, we found a tarantula on the road, unfortunately dead.
Another fabulous day in SE Arizona!