SE Arizona - Sulphur Springs Valley (16 Feb 2013)

by AJ 16. February 2013 12:49

After two days of hard driving it was time to relax and have some fun.  The first push was from Las Cruces, NM to Willcox, AZ and then south to Whitewater Draw where I hooked up with friends Sheri and Tom for a brief time.  Whitewater Draw has enough water this year that it's attractive to the wintering Sandhill Cranes and before we even got our hello out Tom pointed out a circling Golden Eagle making the cranes a bit nervous.  It won't be much longer until these guys head north.  The "Draw" also had Snow Geese, various ducks, a couple species of shorebirds, and the first Great Egret of the trip.  The place was pretty busy with crane seekers and the hoped for American Bittern was no where to be found.

After lunch it was off to cruising the roads of the Sulphur Springs Valley.  I was lucky to find a couple of juvenile Ferruginous Hawks - one light morph which was pretty straightforward but the dark morph took a bit of time to figure out for sure.  As always Northern Harriers glided easily over the grasslands.

The highlight of a lap around Lake Cochise at the Willcox golf course was the group of 32 Long-billed Curlews, a bird I don't get to see often.  No more hard driving - early night in Willcox.


Birds | Travel

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