Grab-shot of Clark’s Grebe, seen with the a group of the more common Western Grebe
Today was another transition day. We spent twelve hours driving between Tucson and Flagstaff, using the ‘back lanes’ to by-pass Phoenix. Despite the fact that most of our journey was across semi-desert – it was only in the last 50 miles or so that we entered Red Rock country, hinterland of the Grand Canyon, almost all the birding action has been water birds! First, at Roosevelt Lake, were we added both of the larger grebes – Western, and the similar but scarcer Clark’s. Then, at Sedona Wetlands, on the run-in to Flagstaff, we had Pied-billed Grebe and seven species of duck – Mallard, Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Ring-necked Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Ruddy Duck and Canvasback. At this latter site we kindly got directed to a delightful near-by Audubon creek-side reserve, where we saw our second pair of nesting Common Black Hawk of the trip, along with a nice selection of warblers and flycatchers to round off the day. Tomorrow we’re going to see a big hole in the ground!
Black-tailed Gnatcatcher – a non-water bird addition to the State list
Great Blue Heron, with Mallard and Ring-necked Duck
Red Rock country – a taste of things to come (photo courtesy of Jane – taken from a moving vehicle!)