Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Red-faced Warblers, White Mountains, AZ - August

Red-faced Warbler - Greer, Apache Co., AZ - August 4th, 2008.

Red-faced Warbler - South Fork, Apache Co., AZ - August 3rd, 2008.

Just back from another hugely successful tour of Arizona. Our tour loop comprised of about 2500 miles beginning and ending in Phoenix, and visiting key areas and habitats in the Central, South-Eastern and Northern part of the state. The diversity of species recorded (250 species) was surprisingly high for two weeks in a land-locked state, with all of our group contributing to some excellent bird finding.

A personal highlight of the tour was a rufous morph Jaguarundi caught in the headlights on the way home from night birding in California Gulch. It was seen well by about five of our party in the lead bus, but missed by the second vehicle. Jaguarundis are apparently very rare in SE Arizona and we were extremely fortunate to have such good, close views of this squat, stocky looking cat, no matter how brief.

We also had a great tour for seeing Red-faced Warblers. We found them on at least five days of the trip, the best observations being in the White Mountains area in Apache County.

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