For the last year I have been receiving emails from the Arizona/New Mexico Birding List, a listserv that allows birders to keep in contact and pass on information. It is really useful for me to hear about sightings from other birders and read trip reports. It allows me to plan my own trips, to venture out with a purpose in mind.
So this week I was planning on staying home. A couple of days of rain in the west valley and some cooler weather (cool enough for a jacket!) was going to hamper any trips for me… or so I thought.
A couple of days ago I started seeing posts on the AZ/MN listerv about Buckeye and Arlington (my local area). What’s more, the reports I was reading described some birds I have not yet photographed. So this morning I drove out along my usual route to see what was around.
The first 1/2 hour of my expedition was totally frustrating… I was scanning bushes and trees and missing birds right in front of me. Several times I spooked raptors by approaching too fast, only to see them take to the wing and disappear over the fields.
Eventually I found my focus (no pun intended) and started to locate the birds. The big successes were the flock of Sandhill Cranes (a first for me) and a Red-tailed Hawk who was happy to pose for 5 minutes within 15 feet of the car.
All in all in was perhaps the best day I have experienced from the car. I’m looking forward to the next trip – hopefully next week.