It’s Almost Spring Birding :)

It has been so mild lately that the birds and butterflies think it’s spring already.  The fruit trees around town are in full bloom.


Fruit Tree in full bloom – yeah Spring!


Scarlett and I got out as often as we could this past week.  Last weekend I suffered from a cold.  On Monday I thought I was on the mend so Scarlett and I decided to drive to Blue Lake State Park.  I’d never been there before.  Sadly it was extremely windy there so I didn’t get out of the car much and there wasn’t much to see on the water.  I did take a walk through the campgrounds in the trees where the wind was less.

My best sighting of the day was a Red-Napped Sapsucker.  You gotta love the name 🙂  Lots of bluebirds and robins were out.


Mountain Buebird




House Sparrows



Red-Naped Sapsucker


On Tuesday Scarlett and I headed to the Tingly Beach Duck ponds.  Nothing much new there.  Lots of turtles enjoying the sunshine.  I did get a brief glimpse of a Lincoln Sparrow.  I don’t see them too often in Albuquerque.


Lincoln’s Sparrow

When I got home that day, I was greeted by a flock of Cedar Waxwings at my house.  I was so excited by this because I’d never seen them at my home before.  I hope they stay awhile! They were way up in the pine trees, so I was challenged to get a good photo.


Cedar Waxwing

Then on Thursday I met up with the Thursday Birders at Willow Creek Trail in Rio Rancho.  I saw a total of 21 species of birds.  The highlights of that hike were finding the Great Horned Owl nest and seeing an immature Cooper’s Hawk.  We tried to find the male owl, who is always snoozing nearby, but were unable to locate him.  I understand the other half of our group found him.  Hopefully next time I will see him.



Great Horned Owl


Cooper’s Hawk

Of course, the highlight of the morning for Scarlett was a chance to play in the river.  I swear I can see her smiling as she plays.


Miss Scarlett having fun!


Scarlett in her favorite depth of water.  She doesn’t like deep water!

Then on Friday I decided to hike Embudito Canyon.  I had planned on going early, but the morning didn’t go as planned and I didn’t get to the trailhead until around 10 am.  Too bad, because it was a beautiful day and I bet the birds were very active first thing.

As Scarlett and I started hiking, I was greeted to beautiful birdsong by a Crissal Thrasher singing atop a cactus.  I had never heard one sing before so it was a real treat.


Crissal Thrasher


Other than that the birds were very quiet.  Not even a Junco! LOL!

As I was heading back to the car, I ran into Joe and Rebecca and a friend looking for butterflies.  They invited me to join them, so Scarlett and I hit the trail again.  Scarlett was happy, she never wants to stop hiking.

Lots of butterflies were flying around the moist sands near the spring.  It was 70 degrees outside so the butterflies were happy.


Mylitta Crescent


Rocky Mountain Duskywing


Painted Lady


Sandia Hairstreak


I also saw wasps busily gathering mud to build their hives.  I find photographing insects very challenging.  They are tiny, quick and in difficult locations to get a good shot.  But that doesn’t stop me from trying 🙂 This wasp photo isn’t as good as it could be because there were little sprigs of dried grass between me and the wasp.  Ah well…


Paper Wasp


Joe saw this strange cocoon.  I have no idea what made this.  But it’s sure cool looking!


Strange Cacoon


By Friday evening I realized I played a little too hard after being sick.  So sadly I had a relapse.  Sigh…..  hopefully I will be out and about soon!

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