Sorry for the late report, but on Tuesday, April 9th, 2013, I spent the day birding in the Prescott Area. This area holds spectacular birding, and I spent my time birding at four different lakes right around Prescott that are all a very short distance away from each other. These four lakes: Lynx Lake, Willow Lake, Watson Lake, and Goldwater Lake, all made up for an incredible day of great birding opportunities combined together. It was my first "real" time of birding this area, and I was very impressed. Weather wise, the day was pretty cold, with overcast most of the day with light snow showers in the afternoon.
My first stop of the day was at Lynx Lake, where I spent over two hours. This lake is nestled in the Lynx Lake Recreation Area, which is mainly ponderosa pine and oak forest throughout the recreation area. The lake itself is a medium-sized reservoir, and it has a convenient 2.5 mile hiking trail with easy difficulty that circles the lake. There is also a nice riparian area close to the parking area which is also very attractive. I spent most of my time here along the trail that circles the lake. Waterfowl at this lake was minimal, with MALLARDS being the only duck. A raft of four EARED GREBES (with some in breeding plumage) was the one notable waterbird. DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS were very numerous. Raptors present at the lake were two OSPREYS and an adult BALD EAGLE. The Bald Eagle was extremely cooperative and practically tame. This bird sat on a perch right along the trail, and I was able to get right beside the bird without spooking it. It was the best look I've ever had of a Bald Eagle in the field! BLACK-CHINNED and ANNA'S HUMMINGBIRDS were both present, and a single BELTED KINGFISHER flew around to different parts of the lake during the time. Three woodpecker species were represented by ACORN and HAIRY WOODPECKERS, and a few NORTHERN FLICKERS. BRIDLED TITMICE and BUSHTITS were both very common around the lake. WHITE-BREASTED and PYGMY NUTHATCHES were both common also around the lake, and I heard a single RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH calling in the woods. A single TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE called on a brushy slope in the area. Warbler wise, at least five PAINTED REDSTARTS were in the area, especially in the riparian area around the lake. LUCY'S WARBLERS were also common around the north side of the lake, a few BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARBLERS were heard singing, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS were common, and a few GRACE'S WARBLERS were singing along the road south of the lake near Hilltop Campground. A few Abert's Squirrels were also around, a squirrel I do like. I recorded 41 species around the lake in my time spent there. It costs 5 dollars to park and bird at Lynx Lake.
Great Blue Heron
Distant Franklin's Gulls
In the day of Prescott birding I tallied 88 species in the four stops. I was very satisfied with my first "real" visit to bird this awesome area. Amazingly, this area only takes about 1.5 hours to reach from home, which is the same time it takes me to drive to other areas I often explore. I will be covering this area more hopefully, and I highly recommend it to anyone else who hasn't birded it.