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December 17th, 2014
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Green Valley/Madera Canyon CBC

The major highlight of my section for the Green Valley/Madera Canyon CBC (Christmas Bird Count) was a CLAY-COLORED SPARROW in Green Valley/Continental. It was with Brewer’s and White-crowned Sparrows along the edge of the pecan grove (private property) to the east of the Santa Cruz River, adjacent to Torres Blancas Golf Course, which is at the southern end of S. Abrego Drive. Specifically, it was northeast (and across the river) from the ponds by the golf club parking lot. While the pecan grove is private, the bird could probably be seen by approaching from the river.

Clay-colored Sparrow

Clay-colored Sparrow

Clay-colored Sparrow

Clay-colored Sparrow

There was nothing else of particular note among 51 species in my area (section 8) on a gray and often rainy day, although 156 YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS was a good number, and a lowland-wintering ROCK WREN was also near the sparrow on the edge of the pecan grove.

Bewick's Wren

Black-throated Sparrow

Brewer's Sparrow

Lark Sparrow

Verdin

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Like most of southeast Arizona, this section of the CBC is an interesting area that doesn’t often attract many birders. It’s always good to visit places like this, with good birding potential but slightly off the main birding path. The section is divided into three main habitats – the Santa Cruz River (dry), and the pecan groves add diversity, while the majority of the section is Sonoran desert and desert scrub. The only water is a couple of stock tanks in the desert, both small and not notable for water birds (although I did have three GREEN-WINGED TEAL at one of them today).

Pecan Grove at Continental

Santa Cruz River at Continental

Santa Cruz River at Continental

Continental and the Santa Rita Mountains

Continental and the Santa Rita Mountains

Continental and the Santa Rita Mountains

 

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