Monday, December 30, 2019
Saturday, December 28, 2019
Thursday, December 26, 2019
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
The Mourning Dove is common (even abundant) whose range includes all of the United States and much of the southern parts of Canada.
They are year round residents in Arizona, and at The Azure Gate you can typically find 50 or more at any point during the day. They nest here from March through August. And those nests can be anywhere: cactus, window ledges, carports, trees etc.
|Mourning Dove nest in Saguaro Cactus|
|Mourning Dove nest in pine|
Six years ago we had a Leucistic Mourning Dove around for about three months:
|Leucistic Mourning Dove|
Monday, December 23, 2019
Sunday, December 22, 2019
Next we have the Inca Dove.
The Inca Dove is a small dove whose range is the Southwestern United States and Mexico. While its range seems to be expanding as far north as Colorado, its population does not seem to be increasing.
It is a fairly tame dove that you can get close to, unlike most other doves.
Friday, December 20, 2019
On to the Eurasian Collard Dove.
According to "All About Birds," Eurasian Collared-Doves made their way to North America via the Bahamas, where several birds escaped from a pet shop during a mid-1970s burglary; the shop owner then released the rest of the flock of approximately 50 doves. Others were set free on the island of Guadeloupe when a volcano threatened eruption. From these two sites the birds likely spread to Florida, and now occur over most of North America.
Another interesting fact is that Eurasian Collared-Doves are one of very few species that can drink “head down,” submerging their bills and sucking water as though drinking through a straw. Most birds must scoop water and tip the head back to let it run down into the throat.
Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Monday, December 16, 2019
On to Doves,
The Rock Pigeon - as most know is found throughout the United States and Mexico -- typically in City Parks taking breads crumbs from humans.
The Band-tailed Pigeon, on the other hand, is only found along the Pacific Coast and Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado. And unlike the Rock Pigeon, it is a wilderness bird, preferring oak and conifer forests. This photo was taken on Mount Lemmon at about 8,000 feet:
Saturday, December 14, 2019
Two Kinglets are found in the US, though the Golden-crowned is much rarer in Arizona. The Ruby-crowned, on the other hand is abundant. It forages much like many of the warblers, titmouse, and chickadees, making it harder to identify without a good look.
|Ruby-crowned Kinglet showing the Ruby crown|
Thursday, December 12, 2019
Three of the four US gnatcatchers can be found in Arizona: the Black-capped, Black-tailed, and Blue-gray.
The Black-capped is rare to the United States, only found in the Santa Rita Mountains.
Tuesday, December 10, 2019
There are seven species of Cormorants in the US. Here I have three: Pelagic, Neotropic, and Double-crested.
The Pelagic Cormorant can be found along the rocky cliffs along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to Mexico. Nests on sheer cliffs and forages in ocean near those rocky shores. More often solitary than other cormorants.
|Pelagic Cormorant taken near Leadbetter State Park, Washington Coast|
The Neotropic Cormorant has a very small range which includes the Gulf Coast of Texas and Mexico as well as the Gulf of California. It is occasionally found in Southeast Arizona.
|Neotropic Cormorant taken at Reid Park, Arizona|
|Neotropic Cormorant taken at Sweetwater Wetlands, Arizona|
The most widespread of the Cormorants is the Double-crested which can be found throughout must of the US, including the interior:
|Double-crested Cormorant taken at Lakeside Park, Arizona|
|Double-crested Cormorant taken at Kennedy Park, Arizona|
|Double-crested Cormorant taken at Fort Lowell Park, Arizona|
|Double-crested Cormorant taken at Sweetwater Wetlands, Arizona|
|Double-crested Cormorant taken at Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge, California|
Sunday, December 8, 2019
One of my favorite Limericks is about the Pelican:
A curious bird is the Pelican,
His beak can hold more than his Beli-can.
He can take in his beak
Enough food for a weak;
And I'm darned if I know how the Heli-can
There are two Pelicans in the United States, the American White Pelican, and the Brown Pelican. The Brown is more often found on the Atlantic, Southern Pacific, and Gulf Coasts. Its preferred habitat is salt bays, beaches, and ocean, mostly over shallow waters.
|Taken from Imperial Beach, Pacific Coast near San Diego|
|Taken at Lakeside Park in Tucson|
|Taken at Imperial National Wildlife Refuge, Arizona|
|Taken at Lakeside Park in Tucson|
|Taken at Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge, California|
The American White Pelican is one of the largest birds in the US with a wingspan of over 9 feet. It also can weigh over 16 pounds. Unlike the Brown Pelican, it breeds in the interior of North America and winters along the Gulf and Southern Pacific Coasts. Its preferred habitat is lakes, marshes, and salt bays.
|Take in Yellowstone National Park|
|Taken at Fig Lagoon, California|
|Taken at Amado Water Treatment Plant, Arizona|
|Take at Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge, Wyoming|