Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A Few Neat Ones From Recent

Sometimes I go out into the field and don't have much in the way of a report, yet alone photography.  And sometimes that produces a few pictures or observations on the side that are good, but aren't good enough for a single blog post.  I've had a few of those scenarios recently, that I'd like to combine for a blog post.

One came from Morgan City Wash.  Morgan City Wash is a thick riparian area, and is a fine migrant trap at that.  Birding expert Troy Corman finds multiple rarities when he comes here, and makes everything look easy.  I bird here a lot, and I can't find even close to what Troy finds.  Recently, Troy found a Broad-winged Hawk, Gray Catbird, something else rare I can't remember, and a Northern Waterthrush.  I've seen the others and photographed them in Maricopa before, but I've only seen a Broad-winged Hawk once.  And it came from Morgan City Wash, one of the only good birds I've discovered here myself.  Troy has discovered at least 5 Broad-winged Hawks here on his own, which is practically a kettle.  I couldn't photograph my Broad-wing before it took off, but I did see it's key field marks after spooking it twice in the dense Morgan City Wash riparian hole.  I didn't find Troy's Broad-wing the next day.  They usually don't stay long, but sometimes, they may stay at a place like Morgan City Wash for a few days.  What bird wouldn't wanna stay there?  Bushwhack through it sometime!  But I did have a cool and close encounter with a pair of Zone-tailed Hawks, who are breeding somewhere in the vicinity.

The large and odd Yellow-breasted Chat was vocal and nearby too.

Also present was this Townsend's X Hermit Warbler Hybrid.  I hate hybrids, most of them.  Some are kinda cool.  This one falls in the category of un-cool.

For some birds, like a Greater Roadrunner, some perches like this 10' branch is considered to be high up.  This bird was singing near the entrance to Morgan City Wash.  Cool, huh?

I saw this Cattle Egret while scouting for my recent Big Day.  He was one of 15 birds in a field.  But on my actual Big Day, these birds weren't in that field.  

When Magill Weber and I recently went down to look at an owl in Organ Pipe, we also saw many cool Willets in ponds throughout Pima and Maricopa Counties.  They are cool in flight, that's for sure!

Lastly, on Mark Ochs's and my recent trip to Mount Lemmon, we stopped at Sweetwater Weltands on the way home to look for a reported Northern Waterthrush.  We didn't see the waterthrush, but had other cool highlights.  This included our first Western Wood-Pewee of the year, as well as another flock of Willets and Lesser Nighthawks starting to fly around.

Posts like this come when I'm busy with a lot of other posts.  There probably won't be another post like this one for awhile!


  1. I haven't been able to get Morgan City Wash to work for me at all, must be bushwacking in the wrong area.

    Anyhow, sweet shots here. it's that time of year when the Chats must be crushed!

    1. Morgan City Wash is nothing short of a confusing maze. It took me 10 times of doing it to finally memorize the area. If it weren't for Troy showing me, I'd have no chance out there. Morgan City has sure had a treasure chest full of birds over the years!

      Thanks dude! Those Chats are a challenge, I need one to come and perch at eye level about 15 feet away....