Category Archives: Phoenix

Abuzz and Abloom

Cactus Flower and Bees Everyone and everything was abuzz and abloom the other morning at the Desert Botanical Garden. It seemed to be The Happiest Place on  Earth. Click on photos for more detail.

Isn’t this guy the epitome of happiness?

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European Starling

Thrasher

Curve-Billed Thrasher

Finch Boy

It was a flying finch frenzy.

Finch Girl

House Finch, male and female

Desert Spiny Lizard

Desert Spiny Lizard

Sparrow Fly

House Sparrow, male

Dfly

Blue Dasher

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Cactus Wren, the Arizona State Bird

Quail

Gambel’s Quail, male

And I got 2 lifers!!!! This little posing bird:

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Gnatcatcher

Black-Tailed Gnatcatcher, male

And another lifer, that I’ve been searching for:

Phain Boy

Phainopepla, male

Phain Girl 3

Phainopepla, female

Gila on Saguaro

Gila Woodpecker

Squirrel Eating

Antelope Squirrel

Yellow Cactus Flower

Bullfrog

Bullfrog

Cactus Color

The desert is glorious in spring and the best is yet to come…

Spring at Papago

Green Heron 2

Green Heron

Cooper's 2

Cooper's 6

Cooper's

Sharp-Shinned or Cooper’s Hawk (hard to distinguish)

Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Pond Slider

Red-Eared Pond Slider

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Egret 2

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Great Egret

Scaup

Lesser Scaup

Ring-Necked Duck

Ring-Necked Duck

Grebe 3

Grebe

Pied-Billed Grebe

Flicker 2

Northern Flicker

Cactus Flower

Green Heron

I spent the first day of spring at Papago Park and made a brief visit to the Desert Botanical Garden, which is in the park. Not much luck there as it was later in the day and packed with people but the ponds at the park made for a decent day of birding. I have a 3-day weekend and I’m planning to go shooting somewhere everyday. More photos to come, I hope…

Happy Spring!

An Egret Study

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On the same cloudy and rainy day that I got the first 2 photos in my last 2 posts (Flicker, Goose), I was able to hang out with this Great Egret at my favorite park, Granada. It’s the first time I’ve seen an egret at that particular park and, as I was leaving a little later, I saw this one and a buddy head back to the lake.

Crop Face

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I never get tired of watching egrets (and herons) even though they are fairly commonplace and I especially like when one lets me close to it for awhile. Well, until they get skittish or annoyed and take off.

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Chomp

CHOMP! Okay, not really, no ducks were harmed or eaten and he/she wasn’t even trying to get the duck, just an optical illusion…but entertaining.

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This egret is in full breeding plumage. More than 95 percent of the Great Egrets in North America were killed for their plumes in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Plume-hunting was banned, for the most part, around 1910, and Great Egret populations quickly began to recover.

The Great Egret is the symbol of the National Audubon Society, one of the oldest environmental organizations in North America. Audubon was founded to protect birds from being killed for their feathers.

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Super Bowl o’ Birds

The Excitement Builds…

Yellow Rumped Warbler

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Corm Fly

Neotropic Cormorant

Killdeers

Killdeers

Grackle Boy

Grackle, male

Grackle Girl

Grackle, female

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House Finch, male

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American Kestrel, male

Girls Mallards

Mallards, females

Inca

Inca Dove

Mock

Northern Mockingbird, the cheerleading captain

Mallard Bathing 2

Mallard, male

Mallard Female 11.23.14

Mallard, female

Quail

Gambel’s Quail, male

Wigeons

American Wigeons, male and female

Light Mallard 2

Mallard hybrid, female

Mallard Girl

Mallard hybrid, female

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Verdin

Dove

Mourning Dove

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House Sparrow, female

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House Sparrow, male

Mallard

Mallard, male

Orange Crowned Warbler

Orange-Crowned Warbler

Hum Autumn 2

Anna’s Hummingbird, female

Red Winged BB

Red-Winged Blackbird

Squirrel Superbowl

And a cute little ground squirrel

everyone’s a winner!

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Urban Adapters

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Shopping Cart

This Neotropic Cormorant was on the Arizona Canal that winds through the Phoenix area. Fortunately, although Phoenix is very urban, we do have a lot of parks, desert preserves, and riparian areas where wild animals can still hang out in a natural environment but many are just adapting to what we leave them. I don’t know what it is about shopping carts that makes people want to shove them in a canal but it’s a pretty common sight in the city. Some people are pigs.

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Stuffed in Canal

Tire

He’s cute, though, and he can fly away from all these eyesores if he chooses.

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“Why are you ruining my environment?”

One general feature of bird species that adapt well to urban environments is they tend to be the species with bigger brains, perhaps allowing them to be more adaptable to the changeable urban environment (BBC).

Flicker Female 2

Gilded Flicker

Gila Woodpecker

Gila Woodpecker

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Ladder-Backed Woodpecker (my first)

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Gila Woodpecker

Towhee

Abert’s Towhee

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Black Phoebe

Hawk 2 June 13

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Harris’s Hawk

I guess that means pigeons must have big brains inside those tiny, bobbing heads?

Rokinon Pigeon