Friday, February 10, 2017
Birding On a Shoestring--Days 11 Through 13
01-24 through 01-26-17
My third year spot, Laguna Atascosa, never seems to disappoint. Every time we go there, something new always crops up, like the White-winged Dove, the in-your face, javalina or collared peccary, which is a rodent, AND a decent picture of a Crested Caracara at eye level. Even though it was an extraordinarily breezy day, both the caracara and I held our ground to make this a shot worth remembering!
A couple of evenings were given to a noted park in Hidalgo County, where the wild parrots roost in eucalyptus trees. It was my first time around those trees, and I took in the exhilarating scent, as if it was my first time.
The first day of parrot hunting was fruitful, but it took a while to get near them, so it was too late for photos. We knew where to find them the second time, so these shots were much better. It was rumored that there were more parrot species there, but I was not able to locate them. Perhaps another time.
A side trip was taken to another birding venue, as I missed a shot of the Clay-colored Thrush the first time. However, the second time, I hit my mark, along with additional shots of the Green Jay and Black-crested Titmouse, more endemics of the Lower Rio Grande Valley.
Another return trip was given to a northern hotspot in Salenino, and this time, the Audubon's Oriole was present. My timing was not good, but I waited a couple of hours, and the Oriole returned.
An Osprey was in the area as was a possible Sharp-shinned Hawk to make things interesting, and it
is believed that we were in the vicinity of a Plain Chachalaca colony. They could be heard from quite a distance and a couple were seen.
We missed the White-collared Seedeater, which was reportedly in the area.
We stayed in Starr County for the return visit to Roma and Falcon State Park. We arrived late afternoon but managed to get our sights on a Verdin, as well as several other birds that you will see