|The power and beauty of nature! at Empire Gulch|
|Northern Pygmy Owl|
|Wrenegade strategist and data analyst Tim leads the team over a stream to potential birds while Wrenegade surveyor Sara carefully scans the surrounding area with her excellent spotting.|
In other news, I have been following my heart on several other birding treks. We were going to hike up a mountain a week ago but it had rained that day. Working on a hunch, we headed down to Cochise Lake and scored big! Not only was it freezing cold(very unusual this time of year) but the storm pushed a thousand+ shorebirds our way! Hot birds for this frigid day included my first state Sanderling, a Greater White-fronted Goose, Bonaparte's Gull, Forster's Tern, and my favorite, the Franklin's Gull(below).
Large numbers of Lesser Yellowlegs(below), Long-billed Dowitchers and Wilson's Phalaropes were also present. White-faced Ibis and Marbled Godwits dotted the lake shore as well. It was an amazing day out. Plus shorebirds are a fun challenge. Sometimes you gamble and win! This day was definitely one of those times:)
I leave you with a collage of the owls I've seen this year. I've heard several others and will hopefully get some photo documentation on them. The Flammulated Owl still evades my camera. Although it had no problem flying over my head early Friday morning! Next week, we slow down and enjoy an event known as "The Big Sit". If you'd like to donate to the Tucson Audubon, click here. A login is not required after you go to the donate button. Remember, we are the Wrenegades and our fearless leader is Jenny Wren:) A Birdathon Big Day is an important way to share the excitement of being outdoors and watching birds while raising funds to support the programs that make this region a better place for us all to live(or visit!) and enjoy. Since 1987, Birdathon has garnered support for birds and bird-friendly habitats, and for Tucson Audubon's work to conserve these unique natural resources and to educate our community on their importance. Until next week friends....
Top left-Long-eared owl, Top right- Barn Owl, Bottom Left-Spotted Owl. Middle Right-Great Horned Owl Bottom Right-Northern Pygmy Owl