Immature Cooper's Hawk
n. of Cibola NWR

   
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Cibola NWR
Sep 22, 2002, 77 - 90 degrees, 0900-1300
- narrated by Henry Detwiler

A quick trip with Suzanne and the young girls to say adios to Brenda Zaun.
56
species

Click on thumbnail pictures for full-sized shots.

Suzanne, Adriana, Gaby and I left Yuma around 7:15 for the 80-mile drive up to Cibola National Wildlife Refuge.  We wanted to say goodbye to Brenda Zaun, the refuge biologist, who is moving to Kauai at the beginning of October.  


Suzanne, Gaby, & Adriana

We found Brenda returning from her morning jog.  The girls really enjoyed playing with Jake and Dusty (her dogs) while we chatted.  She told us about some of the birds being seen, including a mature Bald Eagle at Cibola Lake, and we agreed to meet back at the office after birding the Goose Loop.  
    


Cooper's Hawk


Cooper's Hawk

This immature Cooper's Hawk was at one of the duck-hunting clubs just north of Cibola NWR.  Note the fine streaking on the breast, one of the ways to differentiate it from the less common (in this area) Sharp-shinned Hawk.

At the start of the Goose Loop was a shallow pool formed by recent rains.  Two Wilson's (Common) Snipe were our first of the season.  Also there were Least Sandpipers, Killdeer, and two Solitary Sandpipers.  Half a mile farther along we reached the Cornfield Nature Trail. 

It's an easy, level hike through grassland and alongside new mesquite, cottonwood, and willow groves.  We found sparrows, many Western Kingbirds, a female Blue Grosbeak, and Gaby spotted this bird on the right--a Townsend's Solitaire!  
Townsend's Solitaire at Cibola NWR


Townsend's Solitaire

This common thrush of the highland mountains is a rare  migrant along the Colorado River valley.  It let me approach fairly closely for some digital photos (without my spotting scope).  Back at the refuge office we talked with Brenda and said our goodbyes.  Brenda has graciously contributed many sightings and compiled bird-finding suggestions for Cibola NWR--look for it soon as part of our on-line birding guides!  

   
   
 Cibola NWR
22 Sep 2002
 
# Species Qty
1 Pied-billed Grebe 5
2 Great Egret 1
3 Canada Goose 7
4 Ring-necked Duck 2
5 Osprey 1
6 Northern Harrier 1
7 Cooper's Hawk 1
8 Red-tailed Hawk 1
9 American Kestrel 14
10 Gambel's Quail 15
11 American Coot 68
12 Killdeer 16
13 Greater Yellowlegs 2
14 Solitary Sandpiper 2
15 Spotted Sandpiper 1
16 Least Sandpiper 11
17 Common Snipe 2
18 Turkey Vulture 9
19 Rock Dove 12
20 Mourning Dove 22
21 Common Ground-Dove 2
22 Greater Roadrunner 2
23 Anna's Hummingbird 1
24 Belted Kingfisher 1
25 Gila Woodpecker 7
26 Western Wood Pewee 2
27 Black Phoebe 4
28 Say's Phoebe 6
29 Western Kingbird 22
30 Loggerhead Shrike 8
31 Warbling Vireo 1
32 Common Raven 2
33 Tree Swallow 66
34 Northern Rough-winged Swallow 8
35 Barn Swallow 26
36 Verdin 3
37 House Wren 1
38 Townsend's Solitaire 1
39 Northern Mockingbird 2
40 Orange-crowned Warbler 3
41 Wilson's Warbler 1
42 Abert's Towhee 2
43 Brewer's Sparrow 6
44 Vesper Sparrow 8
45 Lark Sparrow 1
46 Savannah Sparrow 6
47 Lincoln's Sparrow 2
48 White-crowned Sparrow 4
49 Blue Grosbeak 1
50 Red-winged Blackbird 22
51 Western Meadowlark 6
52 Yellow-headed Blackbird 14
53 Great-tailed Grackle 12
54 House Finch 8
55 Lesser Goldfinch 4
56 House Sparrow 2

   

     
Photos Henry D. Detwiler