Monday, January 2, 2012

We went for quality... we got it!

We kicked off our 'photographic' Big Year with a day-and-a-half in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas... in search of the rarities that have been visiting the area over the past several weeks. We went in with a list of six (6) target birds - Rose-throated Becard, Black-vented Oriole, Crimson-collared Grosbeak, White-collared Seedeater, Brown Jay and Golden-crowned Warbler. We went 4-for-6... missing the jay and warbler. Not too shabby! 

The 'shadowy' Becard

The 'coy' Grosbeak
The jay we missed by about two hours. We hung out at Salineno for about two-and-a-half hours once we arrived, but no jay. The warbler we missed by a hair... or feather as it were. We met up with a group at Frontera that had him in the brush about 25-feet back from the trail near the feeding station, but by the time we got on the scene with glasses up, he'd flitted away... leaving us with a slight branch waggle as evidence.
Also, we owe big props to Rob and Eric from Nutty Birder for guiding us beyond the brush to the Seedeaters in Zapata. We would not have gotten them otherwise.
In all, we grabbed usable pics of 52 species. Use the Flickr link in the column to the right to see the haul. And please, if you notice that we've mis-identified any birds, do let us know and we'll get it corrected.
We're going to stick close to home over the next two weeks. Our next trip... a mid-month pelagic outing from Dana Point, CA.

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