Monday, March 20, 2017

Birding at White Rock Lake

After a long time went to White Rock lake for birding. The best place to see the wintering ducks :-)

I reached a little early and went for walk. The weather was really good for trail walks today. I went to Spillway area of White Rock Lake. Wanted to check the ducks and Gulls near the spillway. Since I arrived a little early there were no Gulls but I did see some Gadwall's, Blue-winged Teals, Mallards and Least Sandpipers near the spillway. I also saw lot of Coots near the spillway and a lone Spotted Sandpiper and Killdeer as well.

Blue-winged Teal


Spotted Sandpiper

Red Admiral
I had ebird reports about White-eyed and Blue-headed Vireos and Thrushes in the same area. So I started walking the trails. I did see lot of Yellow-Rumped Warblers, White-Throated Sparrows and Ruby-crowned Kinglets. I also saw an orange-crowned Warbler and few White-eyed Vireos in the trail. I also saw Monk Parakeets and an American Kestrel which was too close to the Monk Parakeets roosting place. You could hear their calls a lot on the trails. And in one of the ponds I saw few Wood Ducks too.

White-eyed Vireo

Wood Duck

White-Throated Sparrow
After walking the trails in Spillway area decided to try my luck with American Black Duck which was reported at Winfrey point. I started the drive on Lawther drive, I wanted to see if I can see the Rudy ducks. I always see them on this drive hence wanted to see if they were still here. After reaching the Winfrey point, at the top I saw there were lot of Yellow-Rumped Warblers, Blackbirds and Mockingbirds there. I headed towards the lake to try my luck with the Black duck. I also saw there were lot of people looking for this duck. But no one had any luck with the same. I did check the NARBA report to see when was the last sighting of this duck and it was on March 17'th. I did not have much expectations but anyways wanted to try my luck. I did not get to see the duck though.

Anyways during the walk I saw lot of Mallards, Coots and Pelicans here. There were some Ring-billed Gulls and Terns flying over the lake. I also saw few Pied Grebes, Blue-winged Teals, Northern Shovelers and long Wigeon too. There were lot of Grackles and Red-winged blackbirds too. There were some White-throated sparrows and Savannah sparrows too.

Red-winged Blackbird

Chloe Wigeon(exotic)

Pied-billed Grebe

Savannah Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

Red-eared Slider
I did walk the trail to see if I could see other birds and I did get to see lot more sparrows, Downy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker and a lone Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. After this I head back home with another satisfactory day of birding. I started late this season but it has been good couple of weeks :-)

Painted Lady

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Northern Cardinal

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

ebird report :

List of birds seen during the day.

1 Canada Goose
2 Wood Duck
3 Gadwall 
4 Mallard   
5 Blue-winged Teal   
6 Northern Shoveler   
7 Ruddy Duck
8 Pied-billed Grebe
9 Double-crested Cormorant   
10 American White Pelican   
11 Great Blue Heron   
12 American Coot   
13 Killdeer   
14 Least Sandpiper
15 Spotted Sandpiper
16 Ring-billed Gull   
17 Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)   
18 White-winged Dove 
19 Red-bellied Woodpecker   
20 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 
21 Downy Woodpecker   
22 American Kestrel   
23 Monk Parakeet   
24 White-eyed Vireo
25 Blue Jay   
26 American Crow   
27 Carolina Chickadee   
28 Tufted Titmouse   
29 Carolina Wren   
30 Ruby-crowned Kinglet   
31 Northern Mockingbird   
32 Cedar Wa wing   
33 Orange-crowned Warbler   
34 Yellow-rumped Warbler   
35 White-throated Sparrow   
36 Savannah Sparrow   
37 Northern Cardinal   
38 Red-winged Blackbird   
39 Great-tailed Grackle   

Monday, March 13, 2017

Birding in Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

It's been almost 4 months since my last birding outing. Since I did not get a chance to look at any waterfowl in Hagerman this winter I thought I will try my luck before all the waterfowl leave for the summer.

Started home early at 6AM and reached the refuge center by 7:30AM. The access road to refuge center is laid new. When I reached I could already see people looking for birds and some of the folks with fishing lines in the water too. I did not see any Geese on the fields. The first pool I checked had good number of ducks. It had Shovelers, Blue-winged teals, Gadwalls and Coots. There were lot of ducks around but not in the same number as we see in December and January.

I could see Shovellers, Blue-winged teals, Green-winged teals and Coots everywhere. I saw only one Pintail among all these other ducks. There were lot of Wilson's snipes and few Yellowlegs scattered across the pools too.

Blue-winged Teal

Ross's Goose?


I saw a group of Pelicans at the back of the lake right next to a group of Terns. Just behind them I could see there were group of dowitchers too.

Wilson's Snipe

American Golden plover



Pelicans and Terns

After birding the lake decided to walk the Meadow pond trail. Just before I entered the trail, I did some birding right next to the gate. There I saw couple of nuthatches, lot of Yellow-rumped warblers and sparrows. The near by stream had a lone Belted Kingfisher too.

The walk on Meadow pond trail was great. I saw almost all the sparrows I had seen earlier(Savannah, Lincoln, Harris, Fox, Vesper and Chipping). It was great to see all these sparrows again. The other birds I saw on the trail were Brown Thrasher, lot of Ruby crowned Kinglets, Chickadees and Titmouses.

Red-bellied woodpecker

Northern Cardinal

White-breasted Nuthatch

Brown Creeper

Harris Sparrow

Vesper Sparrow

Lincoln Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

Tufted Titmouse

Brown Creeper

After walking this trail I decided to try a Crow Hill Trail for the first time. And it was good idea to try this since I got to see first Black and White warbler for the season.

Black and White Warbler

And started photographing butterflies too :-)

Goatweed Leafwing

Dusky-blue Groundstreak?

Southern Dogface

Elada Checkerspot?

Mournful Duskywing?

Red Admiral


ebird :

Birds seen during the day :

1 Snow/Ross's Goose  
2 Canada Goose   
3 Gadwall   
4 Blue-winged Teal   
5 Northern Shoveler   
6 Northern Pintail  
7 Green-winged Teal   
8 Pied-billed Grebe  
9 American White Pelican   
10 Great Blue Heron   
11 Great Egret  
12 Black Vulture   
13 Turkey Vulture   
14 Northern Harrier  
15 Red-tailed Hawk   
16 American Coot   
17 American Golden-Plover   
18 Killdeer   
19 Least Sandpiper   
20 Short-billed/Long-billed Dowitcher   
21 Wilson's Snipe   
22 Greater/Lesser Yellowlegs   
23 Ring-billed Gull  
24 Mourning Dove   
25 Belted Kingfisher  
26 Red-bellied Woodpecker   
27 Downy Woodpecker   
28 American Kestrel   
29 Eastern Phoebe   
30 Blue Jay   
31 American Crow   
32 Carolina Chickadee   
33 Tufted Titmouse   
34 White-breasted Nuthatch   
35 Brown Creeper  
36 Ruby-crowned Kinglet   
37 Eastern Bluebird   
38 Brown Thrasher  
39 Northern Mockingbird  
40 American Pipit   
41 Black-and-white Warbler  
42 Yellow-rumped Warbler   
43 Field Sparrow   
44 Fo  Sparrow  
45 Dark-eyed Junco   
46 White-crowned Sparrow   
47 Harris's Sparrow   
48 White-throated Sparrow   
49 Vesper Sparrow   
50 Savannah Sparrow   
51 Lincoln's Sparrow   
52 Northern Cardinal   
53 Red-winged Blackbird   
54 Western/Eastern Meadowlark