I cant be classed as a true blue birder,but I have had more than a passing interest in birding at a certain low level for many years.I enjoy trying to identify birds by the sounds I hear and I think I have a fairly good recognition ability in that regard.
This past week I finally ventured down the road here 3 miles to one of the World Birding Centre Parks in this area….This one being the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park.In fact my daily 7AM jogging sessions take me almost half way there every day.
There are about 86 listed hot spot birding areas here in the lower Rio-Grande Valley,with 10 of them listed as World Birding Centre sites.More than I plan on visiting for awhile anyway.7 more on the Mexican side.
I’m still unable to identify the above…Its the little ones that really give me trouble.
The park sustained quite a bit of flood damage this past summer,so a good portion was still closed off,but its so large that my 3 hours of walking around in the available area, was quite enough.Especially at nearly 80 degrees,although overcast,….Thank goodness.
And of course I have to get my favourite Green Jay in early.I love their beautiful colors of (gold-green-black and blue) especially in flight.And yes I have learned to recognize their sounds and “key in” when one is near.
Another of the Mexico birds is the Great Kiskadee,a noisy bird that I hear every morning over my trailer but they stay high and move too quickly,so catching them near a feeder was my answer for a photo.And even at that they never stayed in one place very long to key in a shot.I remember these guys well last year at Teacapan Mexico.
They place feeding areas and viewing blinds around the park making close-ups a real treat.I had one all to myself.In the open feeding areas its enjoyable just to sit on one of the many benches provided and just wait and watch…….You don't have a very long wait.
These Chachalaca’s,about the size of a small chicken,are everywhere.They are another Mexican bird that you usually hear more than see when in Mexico.They sound like a bunch of crazy turkeys.I used to listen to them every morning at Celestino Sinaloa,but I never got a close up look at them until I came here.
I don't know the variety of that squirrel,but he is huge,twice the size of the red squirrels at home.Half the size of a ground squirrel.
Now,these Robins…I find it hard to distinguish if they are the “Clay-Coloured,”or the “Rufous-Backed” as both are in this area…See how well these in the 2nd and 3rd photo,blend in to the rocks.They are getting water from a spout sticking out.
And to round off we can compare the size of a Chachalaca with the size of a Red Winged Blackbird.And a Tufted Titmouse stayed still long enough for a shot through the opening of one of the viewing blinds.Cute little guys,similar call to the Chickadee.
All in all an enjoyable 3 hours for these tired old legs…..Most of the babble overheard from the birders that day was the sighting lately of a “Black Vented Oriole”which is usually not seen in this area…..Notice of it even made the local newspaper….The talk was that it has been seen in the RV Park across the road each morning….Much hand waving and describing of where and when was going on amongst the birders…….It made me smile….I just cant get that excited.
I did see several Altamira Oriole’s though,but not well enough to get a picture this day.So I’ll show one I took here in the valley last January.
Until next time.