|My last 10 new birds for the state of Arizona|
In years past, it wasn't unusual to add 15 or 20 birds a year. I was doubtful that I would hit this milestone marker so soon but here they are, numbers 450 to 460. This is the true challenge of state birding.
|The Ringed Kingfisher is an elusive first record and required a lot of skill and luck to find.|
|I speak with Scott as we search for the Iceland Gull|
|We search for rarities in Ajo, which also includes the Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl|
Then it was time for 452. Birders attended an AZFO conference back in 2018. An excellent lecture was given on Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl in Ajo. These saguaro cactus loving owls are considered endangered here in Arizona and found in specific habitat. We've speculated often about where we'd find these owls besides Organ Pipe National Monument. I just didn't want to chase and disturb this owl. There are literally hundreds of miles of excellent habitat for this bird but their locations are very remote and difficult to access without the right vehicle. But we did our hike. I heard and saw the bird and left. This sensitive species is hidden from ebird and only those with excellent knowledge of their habitat will be able to find them. This is one I didn't want to chase and will not chase again. Their populations seem to be doing fine but a civil war broke out among birders about advertising the various owl's locations. These particular owls are not fond of human settlements and like to live away from the urban areas.
|In a remote area near the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, we search for the Rosy-Finches|
|Weather makes birding a lot of fun|
|People search high and low for the White-throated Thrush, yet another first AZ record|
|We discover a rare Red-eyed Vireo on a beautiful spring day|
|During hawk migration, we keep an eye on the skies.|
|Searching for my nemesis, the Dusky Grouse in the White Mountains, we discover by accident an Eastern Kingbird|
|Yellow-throated Vireo territory is quite beautiful in Oak Creek Canyon, Sedona, AZ|
|Looking for longspurs|
Now if we're talking warblers or ocean birds, then I get excited. I still wait for a surprise Magnificent Frigatebird to descend from the heavens during a hurricane event.
|Perfect conditions for a rare Magnificent Frigatebird during monsoon season, when hurricanes move north into our area|