Birding along the Bosque

All last week I went walking several days in the bosque along the Rio Grande…from one end of Albuquerque to the other.  I had so much fun exploring and seeing all the spring birds arriving.

On Saturday, April 16, I went to the duck ponds.  I had heard a Vermilion Flycatcher had been spotted there.  The day was cold and rainy.  I searched high and low for that beautiful red bird.

I didn’t see him that day.  So I went back out on Sunday, April 17.  It was still rainy and cold.  But people had seen that bird the day before in the same conditions.

Almost as soon as I arrived at the ponds, I saw several people pointing to the side of the trail.  I just knew it was that flycatcher.  I quickly got my camera out and ready and was able to get a few shots of him.  The photo quality was poor due to the very low light and rainy conditions.


Vermilion Flycatcher

I went back again on Monday.  The day was clearer and I was hoping to get some better photos of the flycatcher.  Again, I saw him as soon as I hit the trail.  So exciting! Such a beautiful bird!


Vermilion Flycatcher

Since it was a nicer day, I spent some time walking around the ponds and along the river.  The Canada Geese were squabbling with each other while their mates sat on nests.


Canada Geese


Canada Goose on nest

I saw several other waterfowl on the ponds.  As well as a Wood Duck in a tree.  I’m guessing his nest was somewhere nearby but I couldn’t locate it.


Wood Duck


Ring-Necked Duck – male and female


Pied-Billed Grebe

At one of the fishing ponds, poor Scarlett was attacked by some domestic geese.  We were just walking along the sidewalk going around the pond to get a photo of the  cormorants.  Out of nowhere these geese just attacked Scarlett.  She dove into some bushes to get away.  Poor Scarlett…she’s gonna get an irrational fear of large birds after the owl and now the geese!

I quickly saw the reason for the attack.  Babies!!


Baby goose


Family of domestic geese

On Tuesday I walked behind Corrales in the b0sque there.  I had hoped to see a Bell’s Vireo but he wasn’t showing himself.  But Scarlett and I had a great time walking in the warm sunshine.  And I saw lots of other birds to entertain me.


Eastern Bluebird


Cooper’s Hawk


Belted Kingfisher


One of my favs!  Bewick’s Wren


Bushtit – I love to watch them feed.  Such acrobats!


Lesser Goldfinch

Then Wednesday I was back at the duck ponds.  That seems to be a hot spot for spring arrivals.  I saw/heard lots of new birds as well as some of the year round residents.  I especially enjoyed the Summer Tanagers.


Summer Tanager – female


Summer Tanager – male

After the duck ponds, I visited the Alameda Open Space with Valerie on her lunch hour.  I saw some new arrivals at the gull hangout.  A whole flock of Franklin’s Gull.  I didn’t realize how small they were until I saw them with the Ring-Billed Gulls.


Franklin’s Gulls with the larger Ring-Billed Gulls

Then at the end of the week I was back at the duck ponds.  It was warm and sunny.  Sadly, I never saw the Vermilion Flycatcher again last week.  I’m glad I went out in the rain to find him!


Wood Ducks


Neotropic Cormorant


Spotted Towhee


Ash-Throated Flycatcher


Greater Roadrunner


Cooper’s Hawk – it was so cool to have him land right above me.  Almost couldn’t fit him in the frame he was so close!

One of my favorite photos of the week was of this Snowy Egret.  He was busy fishing at the edge of the duck pond.  He didn’t seem to mind that Scarlett and I watched him.  I was hoping to get a photo of him catching something, but he wasn’t having much luck finding anything.


Snowy Egret

And the sitting Canada Geese are now proud parents!


Canada Geese

Other birds are busily feeding young as well.  I was very happy to see a new baby bluebird!


Eastern Bluebirds

It was a wonderful week of birding!  I walked 44 miles last week and saw so many beautiful birds.  And all the signs of spring are here.  The bosque is getting green and flowers are beginning to bloom all over town.

Now that spring is here I’ve been lots of other fun stuff on my outings.  🙂


Horned Lizard


Red-Ear Turtle

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Red-Ear Turtle


The beavers have been busy on the ponds


This dragonfly was as big as my palm!









11 thoughts on “Birding along the Bosque

  1. Your photos are fantastic! You spent a lot of time hiking, and it sure paid off, the variety of wildlife you photographed last week is amazing! I am impressed at how willing you are to brave the elements to capture a favorite bird; the vermilion flycatcher is stunning!

    • Thanks Stephanie! I was definitely willing to be uncomfortable in the cold rain to see the vermillion flycatcher. It just takes your breath away when you see that spot of red in the distance. Then have it fill your view through the telephoto lens. My husband says I’m obsessed with birding lately. Lol! But it makes me so happy to go out and find these jewels of nature.

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