Bird Sightings Report, 1 December to 31 December 2015

Written by Roland on February 8, 2016 – 3:53 pm -

Please note that the results of the annual December Raptor count are available on the Bird Sightings Report web page. Also the Gila River Christmas Bird Count results are available at the same location. Those results are not repeated here with the exception of the Brown Pelican seen at Bill Evans Lake.

Species Accounts

Ducks, Geese, Swans: Larry Malone reported a Snow Goose in the Deming area (29 December).

Cormorants: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Double-crested Cormorant on Bill Evans Lake (29 December).

Pelicans: A Brown Pelican was seen on the Gila River CBC at Bill Evans Lake (Bill Norris, 26 December).

P1010494 Brown Pelican Bill Evans Lake 12262015

Brown Pelican by Jackie Blurton, Bill Evans Lake, 26 December 2015

Ospreys: Eleanor Wooten reported an Osprey on Bill Evans Road (via ebird, 8 December).

Sandpipers, Shorebirds: A Western Sandpiper was reported by Larry Malone in the Deming area (3 December). Larry also reported one Least Sandpiper in the Deming area (3 December) and four more in the Deming area (29 December). A Spotted Sandpiper was reported from the Gila Bird Area by Roland Shook (14 December). Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Greater Yellowlegs at Mangas Springs (26 December).

Greater YL Mangas Swackhamer 26 Dec CBCmod

Greater Yellowlegs by Jarrod Swackhamer, Mangas Creek, 26 December 2015

Pigeons, Doves: Larry Malone reported 11 Inca Doves in the Deming area (3 December).

Typical Owls: Brian Pfeiffer reported a Northern Pygmy Owl on a Forest Service trail in Grant Co. (via ebird, 9 December).

Kingfishers: A Belted Kingfisher was detected in the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 8, 14, and 2 on 30 December).

Woodpeckers: On 12 December a Williamson’s Sapsucker (male and female) was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer (Pinos Altos, near Bear Creek Rd.). Roland Shook reported a Gila Woodpecker from the Gila Bird Area (8 and 30 December).

Female Wil Sap Swackhamer PA 12 Decmod

Female Williamson’s Sapsucker by Jarrod Swackhamer, Pino Altos, 12 December 2015

Male Wil Sap Swackhamer PA 12 Decmod

Male Williamson’s Sapsucker by Jarrod Swackhamer, Pinos Altos, 12 December 2015

Caracaras, Falcons: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a very dark Merlin (Pinos Altos, 8 December re-found on 12 December). Larry Malone reported the following falcons seen in the Deming area on 29 December: 10 American Kestrels, 1 Merlin, 1 Peregrine Falcon, and 1 Prairie Falcon. Eleanor Wooten reported a Peregrine Falcon near the junction of Highways 293 and 211 (6 December)

Swackhamer dark Merlin 9 Decmod

Merlin by Jarrod Swackhamer, Pinos Altos, 8 December 2015

Tyrant Flycatchers: An Empidonax flycatcher was detected in the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 14 December).

Vireos: Two Hutton’s Vireos were reported by Larry Malone in the Deming area (29 December).

Nuthatches: A White-breasted Nuthatch was reported by Larry Malone from the Deming area (3 December).

Thrushes: Larry Malone reported two Hermit Thrushes on 29 December at Spring Canyon State Park.  Larry’s first winter record from this location. A Hermit Thrush was detected in the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 8 December). Jarrod Swackhamer reported an Eastern Bluebird at Mangas Springs (via ebird, 29 December).

Mockingbirds, Thrashers: Two Sage Thrashers were reported from Spring Canyon State Park (Larry Malone, 29 December).

Wood-Warblers: Two wintering Yellow-rumped Warblers were  reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 14 December).

Sparrows: A wintering Green-tailed Towhee was reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 14 and 30 December). Brian Pfeiffer reported a Fox Sparrow from the Gila Bird Area (via ebird, 9 December).

Finches: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Red Crossbill (Bear Creek, Pinos Altos, 9 December).

Swackhamer Red Cross 2 9 Decmod

 Red Crossbill by Jarrod Swackhamer, Pinos Altos range, 9 December 2015

I appreciate all who sent in bird reports. Even thought numbers are important, a list of birds seen in the field also has value. I want to encourage everyone to spend as much time as they can enjoying watching and identifying birds. I will give careful  consideration to all reports that I receive, and will try and include as many reports as I can, even if they do not include numbers of a particular species.

I encourage the submission of records and photos. In order to increase the scientific value of your sightings, I encourage you to please include the number, a date and location for each species, as well as, the full name of the observer. Undated sightings, with or without a location or the number observed, are of a lesser value, however, all submissions are welcome. I do not know where many of you live, so a brief description would be much appreciated.  Please send your photos and reports to tyrannidae@gmail.com. Thanks to all who submitted this month and in the past.

All photographs displayed in this Bird Sightings Report remain the sole property of the photographer. Expressed written permission from the photographer is necessary to use any of these photographs.

Photo of Common Mergansers at the top of this page was taken by Robert Shantz.

Please send comments to Roland Shook.

Gila River Christmas Bird Count 2015

Written by Roland on January 29, 2016 – 1:22 pm -

For a historical look at count data from this specific area, go to the link http://birds.audubon.org/christmas-bird-count, Scroll to the bottom right of the page and click on “CBC Results.” At the top of the next page click on “Historical” and fill in the necessary information. The code for the Gila River CBC is “NMGR” without the quotes.

The center of the Gila River Christmas Bird count is near the junction of Highway 180 and Bill Evans Lake Road. The count circle (7.5 mile radius) encompasses approximately 176 square miles. Most of the land along the river is private and requires a permit to access.

Party Leaders BN KD LM KD KB TH RS BP LM Total
Routes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Snow Goose 2 2
Canada Goose 13 14 4 31
Gadwall 2 2
American Wigeon 2 79 81
Mallard 33 16 26 13 15 44 61 30 238
Green-winged Teal 8 3 2 13
Canvasback 4 4
Ring-necked Duck 2 3 5
Bufflehead 4 4
Hooded Merganser 2 1 3 6
Common Merganser 7 1 4 4 22 2 40
duck sp. 60 9 69
Gambel’s Quail 20 5 13 7 15 28 1 25 114
Wild Turkey 5 5
Pied-billed Grebe 2 2
Western Grebe 8 8
Brown Pelican 1 1
Great Blue Heron 3 1 1 1 1 7
Bald Eagle 1 1
Northern Harrier 1 2 1 1 1 6
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1 1 2
Cooper’s Hawk 1 1 1 1 4
Red-tailed Hawk 3 4 4 3 9 2 7 5 37
Ferruginous Hawk 1 1
Golden Eagle 1 1
Virginia Rail 1 1
Sora 1 1
American Coot 30 4 34
Sandhill Crane 21 12 6 8 10 15 31 103
Killdeer 1 2 11 14
Spotted Sandpiper 4 1 1 3 1 10
Greater Yellowlegs 2 1 2 5
Wilson’s Snipe 1 1 2
Eurasian Collared-Dove 1 16 10 27
White-winged Dove 7 14 1 22
Mourning Dove 7 10 62 5 11 1 23 2 121
Greater Roadrunner 1 1 2
Great Horned Owl 1 1 1 1 1 5
Belted Kingfisher 1 2 1 2 6
Acorn Woodpecker 1 1
Gila Woodpecker 1 1 1 1 4
Red-naped Sapsucker 1 5 6
Ladder-backed Woodpecker 2 1 1 2 2 4 2 14
Hairy Woodpecker 1 1 1 2 3 3 11
Northern Flicker 4 1 5 2 27 3 4 2 48
American Kestrel 3 3 3 2 3 2 3 3 1 23
Merlin 1 1 2
Prairie Falcon 1 1
Hammond’s Flycatcher 1 1
Empidonax sp. 1 1 2
Black Phoebe 4 1 2 1 8
Eastern Phoebe 1 1
Say’s Phoebe 2 3 4 1 2 2 1 2 17
Loggerhead Shrike 3 1 2 1 1 1 9
Pinyon Jay 4 45 49
Western Scrub-Jay 3 1 4
Mexican Jay 8 8
American Crow 3 3
Chihuahuan Raven 1 1 1 3
Common Raven 1 1
raven sp. 14 6 5 11 11 2 3 2 1 55
Bridled Titmouse 8 2 2 8 3 23
Juniper Titmouse 2 2
Bushtit 6 6
White-breasted Nuthatch 5 6 5 5 1 1 1 24
Brown Creeper 1 1
Rock Wren 2 1 3
Canyon Wren 1 1 2
Marsh Wren 2 2
Bewick’s Wren 2 1 5 4 10 4 2 28
Cactus Wren 1 1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 18 3 4 16 1 3 3 48
Western Bluebird 25 15 2 78 1 19 8 14 162
Hermit Thrush 1 1
American Robin 1 4 1 6
European Starling 20 1 21
American Pipit 1 4 1 6
Phainopepla 2 2
Chestnut-collared Longspur 7 7
Yellow-rumped Warbler 14 4 1 5 4 2 1 31
Green-tailed Towhee 1 1 2 9 1 14
Spotted Towhee 1 1 1 1 2 6
Rufous-crowned Sparrow 2 1 13 16
Canyon Towhee 6 5 11
Chipping Sparrow 30 3 38 2 50 15 16 22 176
Brewer’s Sparrow 34 10 5 8 57
Black-chinned Sparrow 3 3 6
Vesper Sparrow 1 1 21 3 26
Lark Sparrow 0
Black-throated Sparrow 7 5 23 1 36
Savannah Sparrow 3 9 12
Song Sparrow 3 18 4 8 14 14 1 62
Lincoln’s Sparrow 2 6 1 2 11
White-throated Sparrow 2 1 2 5
White-crowned Sparrow 94 71 80 8 1 657 146 170 3 1230
Dark-eyed Junco 67 39 93 118 54 285 20 76 25 777
Northern Cardinal 3 1 15 2 3 24
Red-winged Blackbird 5 25 100 130
Eastern Meadowlark 30 30
Western Meadowlark 4 8 20 1 33
meadowlark sp. 2 2 1 105 15 125
Brewer’s Blackbird 170 35 2 220 93 70 275 865
Brown-headed Cowbird 10 10
Blackbird sp. 300 300
House Finch 50 8 39 2 12 22 5 37 175
Pine Siskin 7 10 1 3 21
Lesser Goldfinch 2 5 2 1 10
American Goldfinch 18 2 20
House Sparrow 2 2
Total 771 286 573 292 209 1643 558 1113 429 5874

Routes (with abbreviated descriptions):

1. Bill Norris, Jackie Blurton, Mary Madsen, Keller Suberkropp, Mark Widriechner – Mangas Springs, Bill Evans Road, Bill Evans Lake

2. Ken Dayer, Julian Lee – Lichty Center

3. Larry Malone, Grant Weyburne, Trynje Helfferich – Iron Bridge south to McCauley’s

4. Ken Dayer, Julian Lee – Highway 211 north along east side of Gila River

5. Karen Blisard, Denise Friedrick – above the Highway 211 bridge on private property.

6. Trisha Hurley, Mark Cantrell, Jess DeMoss, Alison Sivik, Jarrod Swackhamer – Gila Bird Area

7. Roland Shook, Linda Moore – Runyan’s property, Beaver Pond on private property.

8. Brian Pfeiffer – Bearpaw Ranch on private property.

9. Linda Moore – the Lost Coyote on private property.

I appreciate all who sent in bird reports. Even thought numbers are important, a list of birds seen in the field also has value. I want to encourage everyone to spend as much time as they can enjoying watching and identifying birds. I will give careful  consideration to all reports that I receive, and will try and include as many reports as I can, even if they do not include numbers of a particular species.

I encourage the submission of records and photos. In order to increase the scientific value of your sightings, I encourage you to please include the number, a date and location for each species, as well as, the full name of the observer. Undated sightings, with or without a location or the number observed, are of a lesser value, however, all submissions are welcome. I do not know where many of you live, so a brief description would be much appreciated.  Please send your photos and reports to tyrannidae@gmail.com. Thanks to all who submitted this month and in the past.

All photographs displayed in this Bird Sightings Report remain the sole property of the photographer. Expressed written permission from the photographer is necessary to use any of these photographs.

Photo of Common Mergansers at the top of this page was taken by Robert Shantz.

 1

Please send comments to Roland Shook.