Bird Sightings Report, 1 February to 29 February 2016

Written by Roland on March 29, 2016 – 8:51 am -

February heralds the end of winter and the hints of warmer days to come. Already Bewick’s Wrens are beginning to sing and begin the reproductive cycle. Other species are becoming restless as their bodies prepare to migrate.

Species Account

Ducks, Geese, Swan: Larry Malone reported two Cinnamon Teal at Lake Roberts (17 February). Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Blue-winged Teal from the Gila River (24 February). Two Canada Geese were reported from the Gila Bird Area by Roland Shook (6 February) and six on 26 February. Karen Bechenbach reported a Canvasback from the Lichty Center (21 February, from ebird).

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Blue-winged Teal by Jarrod Swackhamer, Gila River, 24 February 2016

Kites, Eagles, Hawks: Barbara Smith reported six Golden Eagles, a Bald Eagle, five Red-tailed Hawks, and three American Kestrels near the Nature Conservancy Lichty Center on Box Canyon Road (19 February). A Harris’s Hawk at the Mountain Cemetery in Deming was reported by Larry Malone (19 February). Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Prairie Falcon on Whitewater Road (7 February, from ebird).

Rails, Gallinules, Coots: A Virginia Rail was reported at Mangas Springs (Larry Malone, 25 February).

Sandpipers, Shorebirds: Larry Malone reported three Least Sandpipers at the Deming Waste Water Treatment Plant (19 February). He now has records of this species for every month of the year. Roland Shook reported a Wilson’s Snipe from the Gila Bird Area (6 February).

Gulls, Terns, Skimmers: Two Ring-billed Gulls were reported from Bill Evans Lake (Jarrod Swackhamer, 24 February).

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Ring-billed Gull by Jarrod Swackhamer, Bill Evans Lake, 24 February 2016

Pigeons, Doves: An Inca Dove was reported by Larry Malone from Pecan Park Pond (19 February).

Barn Owls: A Barn Owl was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer from the City of Rocks  (23 February, from ebird).

Typical Owls: Barbara Smith reported a Great Horned Owl near the Nature Conservancy Lichty Center (19 February). A Western Screech-Owl was detected in the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 12 February). A Northern Pygmy Owl was detected by Roland Shook in the Gila Bird Area (16 February).

Swifts: Four White-throated Swifts were reported above Cherry Creek Campground (Jarrod Swackhamer, 17 February).

Woodpeckers: Two American Three-toed Woodpeckers were reported from Signal Peak (Jarrod Swackhamer, 18 February). Jarrod notes it only took 21 Hairys before I found the three-toed this time. A Gila Woodpecker was reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 26 February).

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American Three-toed Woodpecker by Jarrod Swackhamer, Signal Peak, 18 February 2016

Tyrant Flycatchers: A Dusky Flycatcher, identified by voice spectrogram,  was reported from the Redrock Game Department Road by Jarrod Swackhamer (29 February).

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Spectograms prepared by Jarrod Swackhamer of unknown flycatcher on the left, and two Dusky Flycatchers on the right. Note the similarity to the unknown flycatcher to the Dusky Flycatcher vocalization

Swallows: Jarrod Swackhamer reported 11 Violet-green Swallows and two Barn Swallows on the Gila River (24 February)

Gnatcatchers: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Black-tailed Gnatcatcher from Redrock (29 February, from ebird).

Oliver Warbler: Two Olive Warblers were reported by Jarrod Swackhamer from Cherry Creek Campground (16 February).

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Olive Warbler by Jarrod Swackhamer, Cherry Creek Campground, 16 February 2016

Wood-Warblers:  A Yellow-rumped Warbler was detected by Roland Shook from the Gila Bird Area where they have been uncommon this winter (12 February).

Sparrows: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Baird’s Sparrow from near the Grant County Airport (7 February). Jarrod also reported numerous Grasshoppers Sparrows and Ammodramus sp from that location. Jarrod Swackhamer reported Cassin’s Sparrow in the vicinity of the Grant County Airport (4 February). Two Green-tailed Towhees were reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 6 and 16 February). A Song Sparrow was detected in the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 16 February). A Lincoln Sparrow was reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 6 and 26 February). A White-throated Sparrow was reported from the Lichty Center by Jarrod Swackhamer (26 February, from ebird).

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Likely Baird’s Sparrow by Jarrod Swackhamer, near Grant County Airport, 4 February 2016

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Grasshopper Sparrow by Jarrod Swackhamer, near Grant County Airport, 4 February 2016

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Cassin’s Sparrow by Jarrod Swackhamer, near Grant County Airport, 4 February 2016

Ken Dayer submitted the following lists:

Lake Roberts 2/14/2016
Acorn Woodpecker 1
American Coot 53
American Crow 3
Bewick’s Wren 2
Bridled Titmouse 2
Brown Creeper 1
Bufflehead 10
Common Merganser 1
Cooper’s Hawk 1
Dark-eyed Junco 40
Gadwall 3
Great Blue Heron 1
Hooded Merganser 2
Juniper Titmouse 3
Lesser Goldfinch 2
Lesser Scaup 1
Mallard 4
Marsh Wren 2
Mountain Chickadee 3
Northern Shoveler 32
Pied-billed Grebe 3
Pine Siskin 3
Red-naped Sapsucker 1
Ring-necked Duck 16
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 6
Ruddy Duck 32
Song Sparrow 3
Sora 2
Spotted Towhee 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 6
White-winged Dove 7
Wilson’s Snipe 5

nea

 

Tadpole Ridge Trail 2/28/2015
Acorn Woodpecker 1
American Robin 1
Brown Creeper 2
Dark-eyed Junco 24
Downy Woodpecker 1
Hairy Woodpecker 4
Mountain Chickadee 13
Olive Warbler 2
Pygmy Nuthatch 11
Red-naped Sapsucker 1
Red-tailed Hawk 1
Spotted Towhee 5
Steller’s Jay 2
Western Bluebird 13
Western Scrub Jay 1
White-breasted Nuthatch 12
Williamson’s Sapsucker 2

 

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.

Bird Sightings Report, 1 January to 31 January 2016

Written by Roland on February 28, 2016 – 2:48 pm -

January birds usually represent those species that winter in our area. On occasion we can be fortunate to see  or hear species our of their normal wintering ranges. The record of a January Turkey Vulture is a good example. As this report is being written, there is a hint of spring in the air, and warmer temperatures to follow.

Species Account

Ducks, Geese, Swan: Jess DeMoss and Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Common Goldeneye from Lake Roberts (23 January). Eight Hooded Mergansers were reported from Lake Roberts by Jess DeMoss and Jarrod Swackhamer on 23 January. Jarrod Swackhamer also saw eight Hooded Mergansers on Lake Roberts (19 and 30 January). A Bufflehead was reported by Roland Shook from the Gila Bird Area (19 January).

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Common Goldeneye by Jarrod Swackhamer, Lake Roberts, 23 January 2016

 

 

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Hooded Merganser by Jarrod Swackhamer, Lake Roberts, 19 January 2016

 

Bitterns, Herons: Larry Malone reported a Green Heron at Lake Roberts (29 January). Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Green Heron at Lake Roberts  (30 January).

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Green Heron by Jarrod Swackhamer, Lake Roberts, 29 January 2016

American Vultures: A Turkey Vulture was reported on 13 January by Jarrod Swackhamer on Lower Box Canyon Road near Cliff and Gila, NM.

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Turkey Vulture by Jarrod Swackhamer, Middle Gila Valley, 13 January 2013

Kites, Eagles, Hawks: A Ferruginous Hawk was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer at Mangas Springs (20 January), near Bill Evans Lake (2 January) and in the Mimbres Valley (23 January).

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Ferruginous Hawk by Jarrod Swackhamer, near Mangas Springs, 20 January 2016

Sandpipers, Shorebirds: A wintering Spotted Sandpiper was reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 19 January).

Typical Owls: Jess DeMoss and Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Spotted Owl at the Sapillo Campground (22 January).

Swifts: Larry Malone reported three White-throated Swifts (19 January) at Spring Canyon State Park near Deming. He reports that swifts had been winter residents up to 2008 with high counts up to 600 individuals. From 2009 until this winter, none had been seen.

Woodpeckers: A female Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (having a white throat and no red nape) was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer from Mangas Springs (13 January).  Jarrod Swackhamer reported he found a potential hybrid Yellow-bellied x Red-naped Sapsucker at Silver City Golf Course, having a very white face like a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, but with the smallest hint of red on the nape.  The black border around the throat was incomplete like a Red-naped Sapsucker, but the two lines of white on the back (a quality of Red-naped Sapsucker) were wider than expected on a full Red-naped Sapsucker. A Gila Woodpecker was reported from the Gila Bird Area by Roland Shook (19 January).

Caracaras, Falcons: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Prairie Falcon just above the Gila Bird Area (31 January). A Merlin was also seen by Jarrod Swackhamer near the Grant County Airport (23 January). Robert Shantz photographed a Merlin along NM SR 113 in Hidalgo County (12 January).

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Prairie Falcon by Jarrod Swackhamer, near Gila Bird Area, 31 January 2016

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Merlin by Jarrod Swackhamer, White Water Road, 23 January 2016

 

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Merlin by Robert Shantz, Hidalgo County, 12 January 2016

Tyrant Flycatchers: An Eastern Phoebe was reported at Mangas Springs (Jarrod Swackhamer, 13 January).

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Eastern Phoebe by Jarrod Swackhamer, Mangas Springs, 13 January 2016

Vireos: Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Hutton’s Vireo from Red Rock (18 January).

Jays, Magpies, Crows: A Pinyon Jay was reported from the Gila Bird Area (Roland Shook, 14 January).

Verdins: An uncommon Verdin was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer near the end of the road in the Gila Bird Area (31 January).

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Verdin by Jarrod Swackhamer, Gila Bird Area, 31 January 2016

Nuthatches: Roger Hagerman reported a Red-breasted Nuthatch at McMillen Campground (25 January, from ebird).

Wrens: A Marsh Wren was reported by Larry Malone from Lake Roberts (19 January). A Pacific Wren (based upon vocalizations) was reported near the junction of NM 15 and Cherry Creek by Jarrod Swackhamer (27 January).

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Pacific Wren by Jarrod Swackhamer, near NM 15 and Cherry Creek, 27 January 2016

Dippers: An American Dipper was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer three miles above the confluence of the Gila River and Turkey Creek (20 January).

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American Dipper by Jarrod Swackhamer, Turkey Creek, 20 January 2016

Longspurs: Jarrod Swackhamer reported 15+ McCown’s Longspurs mixed in a flock of hundreds of Horned Larks near the Grant County Airport (15 January).

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McCowen’s Longspurs by Jarrod Swackhamer, Grant County Airport, 15 January 2016

Wood-Warblers: An Orange-crowned Warbler was reported by Jarrod Swackhamer from Red Rock (18 January). Jarrod Swackhamer reported a Painted Redstart near the confluence of Turkey Creek and the Gila River (20 January). Roland Shook reported a wintering Yellow-rumped Warbler from the Gila Bird Area (19 January).

Sparrows: A Sagebrush Sparrow was reported by Larry Malone from 6 to 14 January at his Deming residence. Several Abert’s Towhees were reported by Jarrod Swackhamer from Red Rock (18 January). A Swamp Sparrow was reported from Mangas Springs (Jarrod Swackhamer, 2 January). Jess DeMoss and Jarrod Swackhamer reported mixed flock of Sagebrush Sparrows and Black-throated Sparrows on Separ Road and also near Hachita (24 January).

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Swamp Sparrow by Jarrod Swackhamer, Mangas Springs, 2 January 2016

Tanagers, Cardinals, Grosbeaks: Roger Hagerman reported a Pyrruhloxia at his Grant County residence (26 January, from ebird).

Ken Dayer sent in the following January checklist.

Highway 464 & Redrock 1/27/2016
Abert’s Towhee 1
American Coot 2
Bewick’s Wren 4
Black-throated Sparrow 21
Brewer’s Sparrow 63
Bufflehead 1
Canyon Towhee 1
Chihuahuan Raven 8
Crissal Thrasher 2
Dark-eyed Junco 4
Golden Eagle 1
Greater Roadrunner 2
Green-tailed Towhee 1
Horned Lark 1
House Finch 5
Ladder-backed Woodpecker 1
Lark Bunting 14
Lesser Goldfinch 11
Lincoln Sparrow 1
Loggerhead Shrike 2
Marsh Wren 1
Northern Flicker 1
Northern Harrier 1
Red-naped Sapsucker 1
Red-tailed Hawk 7
Redwing Blackbird 2
Rufous-crowned Sparrow 1
Sagebrush Sparrow 5
Say’s Phoebe 1
Song Sparrow 26
Sora 1
Spotted Towhee 1
Verdin 1
Western Meadowlark 36
White-crowned Sparrow 120

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.