Terrific morning with a delightful couple from Zimbabwe visiting their daughter, who’s a neighbor of mine. Despite forecasted breezes and a building overcast, we saw most of the birds I’ve seen lately in Embudito and at the Rio Grande Nature Center. Treat of the day for me was finally seeing the Golden-crowned Sparrow that’s been seen there this past month when Pushpa pointed out the yellow crown there in a small flock of White-crowned Sparrows. We also got a great look at a Red-tailed Hawk absolutely stationary riding a thermal above the canyon, the Cactus Wrens (and a Bewick’s calling), both the Curve-billed and Crissal Thrashers,
Say’s Phoebe, Black-throated Sparrows, Scrub Jays, White-winged Doves, Canyon Towhee, Ruby-crowned Kinglet (who’s been hanging in that patch of oak on the north side of the canyon near the water), Bushtits, and the first Barn Swallow of the season for me. Scaled, and especially Gambel’s, Quail were calling the whole time, but it wasn’t until the very end of our walk that we finally found one, which was a highlight for our visitors.
Then it was off to the Rio Grande Nature Center, with the usual coots, mallards, wood ducks, that pesky swan, and Cinnamon Teal in the ponds, and Red-winged Blackbirds (a lifer thrill for my Zimbabweans), nice look at a Cooper’s Hawk, the Ring-necked Pheasant still hanging out in the brush to the left of the herb garden feeder
and, of course, we had to take a look at them owl babies
Didn’t see any bluebirds today, but did have a couple of Downy Woodpeckers, White-breasted Nuthatch, and a number of other species over the morning. Good birding day!