|I found a magical fairy village in the middle of the woods!|
|Enjoying the cool breeze of a monsoon storm in Sierra Vista along the San Pedro River|
And it is during this time of year that I collect my data for migrating warblers, shorebirds and birds listed as endangered or in decline. Did they nest? Are there juveniles? Are there more or less of these birds coming through the area right now? After chasing life birds in Chiapas, I just felt I needed to connect more with "my birds" and do quality study.
|The monsoon clouds build over Cochise Lake in Wilcox|
|A Northern Mockingbird chases a Swainson's Hawk off the post. That takes some huevos.|
|White-winged Dove perches on an Ocotillo|
|A male Northern Cardinal sits on top of a Saguaro. Talk about a strange sight!|
|Gila Woodpeckers are LOVING the sugar water right now. Sorry hummingbirds!|
Spiders hid on leaves. And chats.....did a lot of chatting:)
|A Yellow-billed Cuckoo flies over my head. I have a special connection with this bird as it followed me around last year in the trees:) And it was back again in the same area where we hung out for awhile watching each other.|
|Here's my friend who is still around|
Back at my work site, I do a weekly survey of the birds found around the campus. The Purple Martins were concerning for me because they are clear cutting major areas of desert next to the school and wash. Normally, I see these birds before school is out but I hadn't seen them before summer break. However, I was SO happy when I discovered this desert subspecies flying around the Saguaro cactus at the start of our new school year.
I don't know how they did it with all the chaos around them but they raised another wonderful family. They had 3 young at the time but have now begun their migration. I hope they return next year. It's crazy how connected I have become with my local birds.
|Black-crowned Night Heron|
The heat can be intense! Thankfully warbler migration begins on top of Mt. Lemmon in August and this is where I'll finish my reporting.
On this beautiful day, we had 11 of the 13 warbler species on the mountain. The Wilson's, Townsend'ss and Hermit warblers were AMAZING! It was a successful outing indeed!
|Hermit Warbler in flight|
Birding can be quite meaningful. With this collection of data, I become stronger and better at being not just a birder but a true citizen scientist.
Over the next two weeks, we'll meet new friends on the trails. Las Aventuras is about to begin Chapter 3 of "Americano". Stay tuned for more friends:)