Thursday, August 27, 2015

Ocean Life in Glendale..

Another post for the Glendale Recharge Ponds, to add to yesterday's post.  I was originally thinking about going to Mt. Ord today on August 27th, 2015, but I woke up later than intended due to tiredness so I decided to go to Glendale for a second consecutive morning.  Yes I wanted to get some Ord in, but Glendale was super awesome today.  There were a handful of birders present at the ponds this morning, probably 15 or so.  And all were after the continuing Sabine's Gull.  This beautiful gull that is primarily a pelagic species put on another great show for me.  Here is another selection of photos of this gull from today.

I spent much of the morning birding with Tyler Loomis, Sean Fitzgerald, and Darrell Wilder, and saw many other cool birders I know.  Tyler discovered a second cool bird of the morning, a Sanderling.  Sanderlings are rare but annual in Arizona and are another bird that are found specifically along coasts.  It was neat to get this bird, and looking at my Glendale Recharge Pond records, this was the 3rd Sanderling I've had for the location.  Cool beans.  These pictures show the Sanderling as well as a nearby Western Sandpiper for comparison.

A crazy highlight came along when we saw three Peregrine Falcons ganging up on a Belted Kingfisher in one of the ponds.  The Kingfisher dove and flew short distances constantly to avoid the sweeping and diving falcons over the course of about four minutes.  Each falcon took it's turn at trying to capture the outnumbered Kingfisher for it's prey.  It was a mind blowing sequence to watch.  Sean, Darrel, Tyler and I all watched and thought for sure the Kingfisher was going to die.  But a shocker did happen, and the Kingfisher prevailed after it's dodging and diving tactics discouraged the Peregrine Falcons from hunting him any further.  I swear, the Kingfisher flew in a victory lap.

Tyler and I stayed at the ponds longer than others and we covered a lot of the area.  Both of us tallied over 70 species.  I even got two new birds for Glendale in the riparian area to add to my patch, a Summer Tanager and Black-throated Gray Warbler.  That wasn't realized until I got home.  My Glendale Recharge Pond bird list now stands at 204 species, and there is a lot of potential for me to add much more in the songbird department in the riparian area that borders the ponds on the western perimeter of the area.  Another great day in the field to enjoy birding..


  1. Yeah, that is a great place to bird. HOT! But awesome shorebird habitat. Great photos. The gull seems to go somewhere during the day out of the GRP....just not sure where. That's one beautiful gull!

  2. Love your blog! How cool that you got to see the Sabine's Gull :) Hubby and I recently made it out to the GRP and were not disappointed. Definitely a birding hotspot!