This update of Tucson Audubon Society's Rare Bird Alert for Southeast
Arizona was made on February 3, 2017; the next update will be made on
February 10. Phone your reports to 520-629-0510 X 3, or email to
rarebirdalert AT tucsonaudubon.org.
SEVERAL IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS follow the sightings, including information
on temporary closures and rules for access to other important birding
areas. Abbreviation "m.ob." =3D multiple observers. An asterisk (*)
preceding a species name in the list indicates that it merits careful, full
documentation. A pound sign (#) indicates that brief corroborating details
are warranted. Documentation and photos of review species may be submitted
Where directions are not given, they can be found in the most recent
edition of Tucson Audubon's "Finding Birds in Southeast Arizona". More
information including updates may be found here:
http://tucsonaudubon.org/what-we-do/publications/fbi.html. For additional
sightings in the region, please see the The Arizona-New Mexico Birding
For more information about Tucson Audubon field trips, lectures and
educational opportunities, please see www.tucsonaudubon.org.
SPECIES MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT INCLUDE:
#"Harlan's" Red-tailed Hawk
#"Yellow-shafted" Northern Flicker
A *NUTTING'S FLYCATCHER continued south of the confluence of California
Gulch and Warsaw Canyon on 1/29 (m.ob.). It has ranged along about 1/2 mile
of the wash, from GPS: 31.3989, -111.2475 to 31.39837, -111.24355.
#BLACK-CAPPED GNATCATCHERS were reported on 1/28 (Wyatt Egelhoff).
Annotated map: http://goo.gl/wSr0mi
Three #RUDDY GROUND-DOVES continued along the De Anza Trail in Rio Rico
about 200-300 yards southeast of the Guy Tobin Trailhead on 2/3 (m.ob.). A
bright blue plastic water bottle is a good landmark for the spot.
At Pena Blanca Lake (annotated map: http://goo.gl/zBbzl), an #EASTERN
PHOEBE was reported again on 1/31 (Robert Smith) in the large cove in the
northwest part of the lake, about 1/3 mile north of the boat ramp.
TUBAC area (annotated map: http://goo.gl/maps/yDqi0)
Two *ROSE-THROATED BECARDS continued along the De Anza Trail at Tumacacori;
the female was seen through 2/2 (Jeffrey Timmer) and the male through 1/29
(m.ob.); from the trailhead just north of the mission, head east to the
kiosk. There is a short spur to the river just east of here, and the birds
have been seen in this area (occasionally high in the cottonwoods).
An #EASTERN PHOEBE continued along the De Anza Trail between the Tubac
Bridge and Clark Crossing Road on 2/1 (m.ob.). A beautiful and unseasonal
male Varied Bunting was photographed about 0.2 miles south of the bridge on
2/2 (David McIntyre).
A #BROWN THRASHER continued at Santa Gertrudis Lane this week (m.ob.)
across from #12. Remember to park along the frontage road and walk in.
PORTAL & the CHIRICAHUAS (annotated map: http://goo.gl/maps/XfXfX)
A *STREAK-BACKED ORIOLE continued to be seen daily (though sporadically) at
the Foothills Road (aka Rodrigues yard) feeders as of 2/3 (Bob Rodrigues).
A #BROWN THRASHER continued along Prickly Pear Ln north of the Portal Store
on 2/1 (Rick Plage).
GREEN VALLEY & the SANTA RITAS
In Florida Canyon (annotated map: http://goo.gl/AAzD6), *RUFOUS-CAPPED
WARBLERS continued on 2/2 (Laurens Halsey) in the West Fork past the dam.
Directions: About 400 yards from parking lot is a metal gate, and just past
the gate the canyon forks. The main trail follows the East Fork, but most
sightings have been in the West Fork to the right. About 125 yards up the
rough trail in the West Fork is a large water tank and a low dam. The oak
grove is about 1/3 mile past the dam. Note: The trail for the West Fork can
be difficult to find, and is steep and rough in places. If you see the sign
with distances to Florida Saddle, Madera Canyon, etc you've missed the
turn. It is not necessary, recommended or permissible to enter the research
station to see these birds. #BLACK-CAPPED GNATCATCHERS continued in Florida
Canyon this week (m.ob.); they've been seen near the Florida Canyon parking
area and a short distance up the trail.
A #PALM WARBLER continued at Quail Creek Veterans Municipal Park on 1/30
(m.ob.). This week it has been seen around the dog park, and west of the
ball fields in the basin lined with crushed pecan shells.
A #CACKLING GOOSE continued at the Benson STP on 1/29 (Sandy Turner).
WILLCOX & the SULPHUR SPRINGS VALLEY
A male #EURASIAN WIGEON continued at Lake Cochise by the Twin Lakes Golf
Course on 1/31 (m.ob.).
At Patagonia Lake (annotated map: http://goo.gl/GgNvs), a #GREATER SCAUP
continued this week (m.ob.). A #"YELLOW-SHAFTED" NORTHERN FLICKER, #EASTERN
PHOEBE, #WINTER WREN, #BLACK-CAPPED GNATCATCHERS and a #GRAY CATBIRD all
continued along the Birding Trail this week (m.ob.). observers are
encouraged to note or record the calls of the wren to help separate this
from the very similar Pacific Wren.
SIERRA VISTA & the HUACHUCAS
At the San Pedro House, a #LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH was seen again along the
San Pedro River on 1/31 (m.ob.); last year one frequented the area between
trail markers #7 and #8.
An #EASTERN PHOEBE continued just north of the Hereford Bridge over the San
Pedro on 1/30 (Robb Welch).
A #BROWN THRASHER was photographed at a residence in Hereford on 1/30
SANTA CRUZ FLATS
A #LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH continued along the Santa Cruz River at Sasco Rd
on 1/28 (m.ob.).
At the intersection of Wheeler and Baumgartner Rds. a #RUFOUS-BACKED ROBIN
continued through 2/1 (m.ob.) and a #RUDDY GROUND-DOVE continued through
1/31 (Gregory Miller). They have been seen near the tan house on Wheeler,
which is possibly occupied (please be sensitive to any potential occupants
or neighbors); the pomegranate tree is a good place to start looking.
A #"HARLAN=E2=80=99S" RED-TAILED HAWK was reported again from near the inte=
of Green Reservoir Rd and Curry Rd on 1/28 (Tim Helentjaris).
An #OVENBIRD continued at Roper Lake SP on 1/31 (m.ob.); it was along the
dirt path which leads from the Island parking lot to the day use area. A
#YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER was photographed on the Island on 1/28 (Jeff
Coker, Chris McCreedy).
A #GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW was reported from Howard Well on Hackberry Rd (
http://ebird.org/ebird/hotspot/L2275702) on 1/31 (Jeff Coker, Diane Drobka)=
#McCOWN'S LONGSPURS were reported along Curly Horse Rd on 2/3 (Ken
The revised 8th edition of Tucson Audubon's Finding Birds in Southeast
Arizona is available here: http://www.tucsonaudubon
.org/what-we-do/publications/fbi.html and updates to the 8th edition can be
found here: http://www.tucsonaudubon.org/what-we-do/publications/
TUCSON - Mosquito control operations are scheduled at Sweetwater Wetlands
from 6:30-8:30am on Mondays during the warmer months (usually March -
November). The gate will open when operations are finished. Due to
long-term construction, Roger Road WRF is closed. See our Sweetwater page (
or http://cms3.tucsonaz.gov/water/sweetwater for details.
The Pima County Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department security
procedures are subject to change any time. Please see the "bird watching"
link on this page for important information regarding access:
EL RIO OPEN SPACE PRESERVE/COACHLINE GRAVEL PIT - park in the paved lot in
the southwest corner or along the south edge near the berm. Construction
may hinder access for the next few months. Annotated map:
RAMSEY CANYON - Ramsey Canyon Preserve is closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
ASH CANYON B&B: open dawn to dusk EXCEPT Wednesday, when open noon to dusk.
Parking is limited; please carpool whenever possible. No need to call ahead=
BENSON - the Benson Birding Trail is no longer accessible as the property
is under new ownership.
FORT HUACHUCA - access requirements are posted on its official webpage at
http://www.huachuca.army.mil/pages/des/accesscontrol.html. The Visitor
Control Center is located at the Van Deman Gate on Hwy 90. The fort is an
active military installation and will suspend your driving privileges on
Post for 30 days on your first offense for talking or using a cell phone
while driving. You MUST use a hands free device. Current entry requirements
(subject to change without notice): US citizens must pass a background
check and should be prepared to show photo ID for everyone in the vehicle
at the entrance, and possibly your vehicle registration and insurance as
well. Foreign nationals must be accompanied by an approved military escort;
contact the base (520.533.7111), or possibly the Sierra Vista Visitor's
Bureau (520.417.6960) well in advance. ACCESS NOTE: apparently some states
driver's licenses do not meet federal requirements for base entry (KY, ME,
MT, PA, SC, MN, MO, and WA); see https://www.dhs.gov/real-id-public-faqs or
http://huachuca-www.army.mil/pages/des/visitoraccess.html for details.
SANTA CRUZ FLATS: Management at the Evergreen Turf Sod Farm has asked
birders not to drive into the property (i.e., the 2750 road); birding from
perimeter roads (i.e., Tweedy or Pretzer) is still fine.
BAIRD'S SPARROW HILL AND THE VACA RANCH CORRAL in the San Rafael Valley is
off limits to birders due to the thoughtless actions of a few birders. DO
NOT ENTER THE PROPERTY. A sign has been posted previously stating that
"stopping within 0.25 mile of the corral is prohibited."
AVRA VALLEY WRF: Gates open 7AM and close PROMPTLY at 2PM (do not linger,
you will be locked inside).
GREEN VALLEY WRF: under construction, access uncertain. When open, use the
call box at the gate, sign in and out at the office, and stay away from
buildings and construction equipment.
ROGER ROAD WRF: Closed.
CORONA DE TUCSON WRF: Closed.
NOGALES STP: Closed.
SEAZ RBA Compiler - Tucson, AZ
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