79 bird species today, plus a few big mammal highlights, from Kino Springs to Las Cienegas.
About 30 BLACK VULTURES in the roost by Nogales Cemetery.
CLAY-COLORED SPARROW again, but this time by the dry ‘first’ pond, which is about midway between the turning on SR 82 and the golf clubhouse. I saw one by Stacey Lake (near the clubhouse) on Jan 25th, but this is more than half a mile away, so maybe it’s a different bird.
Also there, a pair of ‘Mexican’ MALLARDS, a COMMON MERGANSER, calling SORA, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, a dark juvenile MERLIN, lots of VERMILION FLYCATCHER action, and RUFOUS-WINGED SPARROWS.
Patagonia Lake Rd:
Several BOTTERI’S SPARROWS were eventually persuaded to show themselves at the end of Azteca Ct., and a couple of TURKEY VULTURES drifted by.
The wintering CASSIN’S VIREO was at the bottom of the steps along the birding trail, in the same place I saw it last week.
Also at the lake, a decent size flock of COMMON MERGANSER, a couple of EARED GREBES, NEOTROPIC CORMORANT, GRAY FLYCATCHER, BROWN CREEPER, and BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARBLER. We missed the Eastern Phoebe, but others saw it. Trogons seemed to be giving everyone the slip today.
Tucson Audubon’s Paton Center, Patagonia:
A dashing juvenile SHARP-SHINNED HAWK and a slinky BOBCAT curtailed the feeder birds somewhat, but we still found WHITE-WINGED and INCA DOVES, RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER, and a smart male LAZULI BUNTING. Larry said that there had also been Violet-crowned Hummingbird, Williamson’s Sapsucker and White-throated Sparrow in the last couple of days. Thanks Larry!
A flock of about 100 CHESTNUT-COLLARED LONGSPURS allowed several close flight views alongside Curly Horse Rd, 3.3 miles after turning from SR 83 in Sonoita. This is just after the first bend to the left after the road turns to dirt.
To round off the day nicely, a fun pair of GREATER ROADRUNNERS, a couple of BURROWING OWLS at the northernmost Prairie-Dog reintroduction site, good chances to study both ‘Lilian’s’ EASTERN and WESTERN MEADOWLARKS, and COYOTE and PRONGHORN to make it a great day for mammals too.