Bald Eagle, immature
This is either Hope or Joy, one of 2 Bald Eagles hatched in a nest in a Scottsdale golf course last spring (in a densely populated area). They were well-known locally then and each of them fell from their nest as nestlings and were placed back in by Arizona Game and Fish and Liberty Wildlife rehabbers. You can read their story and see them as babies here and here. I never saw them last year as their exact location was a secret, for their safety.
Anyway, I was at Lake Marguerite, which isn’t far from that golf course, a couple times recently looking for a Hairy Woodpecker and the second time I looked up and Hope or Joy was watching me! It’s always exciting to see a bald eagle, I think, and he/she took off right as I watched, zipped over the lake, swooped down, grabbed a fish, and flew off right by me. And I even saw the Hairy Woodpecker (which was my 12th lifer this year) but the photo is basically a black and white blur so I won’t show it here. However, I got a couple shots of this girl:
Ladder-backed Woodpecker, female
I was also at Granada Park recently, my old standby park that I don’t visit much anymore, and I was surprised to see this beautiful guy watching me from the trees. While not a lifer, it was the best shots I’ve ever gotten of one.
Yellow-rumped Warbler, Audubon’s
And when I was recently volunteering at the Desert Botanical Garden, I walked around afterwards and saw a few more critters.
Gila Woodpecker, male
Costa’s Hummingbird, male
Costa’s hummingbird, female
These photos were from a recent late afternoon visit to Papago Park in Phoenix.
Ring-Necked Duck Drake
Snowy and Cormy
Papago has a lot of reeds which can make for interesting patterns on the water.
Common Gallinule, immature
I went there in search of these lifers, Northern Pintails, and I found them. There were 3 drakes and a popular hen.
After posing nicely, they swam off into the sunset.
Gilded Flicker, male
I go to several urban parks on a regular basis. Weekly I head over to Granada Park, the closest to my house, but I also visit several others. Here are a few friends I met over the last month, mostly at Granada but also 4 other parks.
Gambel’s Quail, female
Rosy-Faced Lovebird, juvenile
Black Phoebe, chowing down
Gila Woodpecker, female
Brown-Headed Cowbird, female
House Finch, yellow variety
I guess these guys, above, must be Mallard hybrids (or domestic ducks), but they’re funny, always swimming together and looking similar but different. Must be related.
And another little buddy that I see at the park often, Georgie, a water dog:
While it’s still duckling season, I’d better show you some of those I’ve seen the past few weeks. Our migratory waterfowl have split for the season and those that remain are year-round residents.
You probably have baby ducks where you are, too, or will soon, but who doesn’t love a baby duck and watching them play?
Okay, that’s enough…
I thought this little guy above was going to go under. He was all alone and paddling furiously against the current because he didn’t want to be swept under the bridge across the canal. But, in the end, we scared him so that he did go under the bridge and he was happily floating toward his family last time I saw him.
This pretty girl, above, looks different than the other Mallard hens, glistening in the water.
Resident Water Bird Bonus Shots
Green Heron, snacking
This Neotropic Cormorant caught himself a big one and had a hard time controlling it. I left before the gory ending.