On the 8th we started birding early; at 730am, at Riparain Institute in Gilbert, AZ. As soon as we got out of our truck we heard birds chirping. We started to make our way to the boardwalk and saw Curve-billed Thrasher, Northern Mockingbird, and Gila Woodpecker. We got to the floating boardwalk and you could tell the Ring-necked Ducks and Mallards are used to getting feed by people. We were within feet of these ducks. As we moved on we saw some House Finches, more Mallards, and an Abert's Towhee poking at the ground forging for food. There was a half dry pond with a Neotropic Cormorant and Great Egret. So we had only been there like 30 minutes and already three lifers/big year birds! Those three are the Gila Woodpecker, Neotropic Cormorant and the Abert's Towhee.
Then we walked over to the cactus plants behind the north restrooms and there we saw Starlings and Lesser Goldfinch. Then after taking some nature shots of the cactus we headed down a path. We saw hummingbirds at the Botanical Garden; Anna's and Black-chinned Hummingbird; BCH is a big year bird! Then we almost stepped on a pair of Inca Doves! This little bird is kinda cute and a lifer for us! We were doing really well, plus seeing some other birds that we see all the time.
We went to pond #5 and saw a wide variety of ducks, a few shorebird, and some wading birds. We saw Great Blue Herons, Northern Shovelers, Least Sandpiper, American Avocets, and Long-billed Dowitchers. We also caught a glimpse of a Black-crowned Night Heron and on the way out we saw a Common Gallinule. All in all it was a great day of birding we left there at 3pm and had over 1000 picture!!
Tomorrow we plan to bird in Albuquerque, NM at Rio Grand Nature Center for a few hours; hoping to get a Wood Duck!
I'm trying something a little different today with a slideshow and let me know how you like it!!
We are now up to 177 birds this year and hope to make 200 by the end of the month! Wish us luck!!