Total ABA Species Recorded During 2010 - 731

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Fort Huachuca and California Gulch

It was Sunday today, a good day to go onto Fort Huachuca, in that we wouldn't have to contend with heavy traffic at the gate.  Indeed getting into the fort was quite straightforward, much easier than entry to Ft. Story in Virginia Beach.  Once inside, we took the road to Garden Canyon, our intention being to go all the way up to Sawmill Canyon which we did.  The road has considerably worsened since the last time I drove it, but we made it to the picnic area with only a minimum of bottoming out.  Our first target bird was Buff-breasted Flycatcher which it didn't take long to find.  An adult feeding a fledged young (photo) was the first of many.  Among the pines were a few Grace's Warblers, the western replacement for our Yellow-throated Warbler.  Also among the pines were several Hepatic Tanagers.  We continued up the trail where we hoped to get some other warblers.  We didn't find any, but we did meet Alicia and Dieter Kamm, local birders who do a lot of traveling to see birds.  They gave us some helpful advice concerning species we still had yet to see.  Coming down the mountain seemed easier than the climb and we headed back toward Green Valley.  On the way we stopped at an Italian restaurant at Sonoita where we were waited on by a German lady who reminded me of Frau Blucher, the character played by Cloris Leachman in Young Frankenstein.  In Green Valley we got a motel for later tonight and went to meet Melody Kehl with whom we had made arrangements to be taken into California Gulch.  Our targets there were Five-striped Sparrow and Buff-collared Nightjar.  It had rained, so the temperature was actually rather cool and not the 100+ we had expected.  It took a little time to get a good look at the sparrow, but we succeeded.  Melody had put together a picnic supper which we enjoyed while we waited for it to get dark enough for the nightjar to call.  We all sat around in folding chairs listening intently.  Melody thought she heard something, but none of the rest of us did.  However, there were sounds coming from the direction of the Mexican border a quarter mile away.  We figured it was time to leave.  Along the road back, we saw many frogs and toads, brought out by the rain, as well as three large owls.  When we got back to Green Valley, the rain had stopped so Melody offered to take us up to Madera Canyon to try for Whiskered Screech-Owl.  It was a quick, successful run and we were back at our motel by 11:00.  The five new birds for the day brought the list to 671.


  1. Fantastic! I checked on Lucifer Hummingbird, and it seems there is a male coming to feeders at Ash Canyon B&B still.

  2. Wow!! You are truly rackin' 'em up!! Amazing. I was off the internet (we're in Boulder and haven't been spending time with our computer) and hadn't been checking your post and I come back this am and see that you are at 671 . . . I believe you had told me 670 was you new goal . . . time to set that 700 goal . . . CONGRATS!! Renee

  3. Just noted that Flame-colored Tanager is still being seen in Madera Canyon at Madera Kubo B&B - as of day before yesterday.

  4. Rock on!
    Lucifers were at Mary Jo's yesterday in Ash and White-eareds today at Beatty's in Miller. In May Red-faced Warblers were easy above Beatty's, if you still need them. I'm having trouble keeping track!!!