Some sad news…

A short post this time – just for this news.

Thursday we walked the Nature Conservancy lands & found out our darling little Western Screech Owl was killed – likely by another owl, and likely a Spotted Owl.  The caretakers noticed all the feathers on the ground near his roosting spot – then noticed the Spotted Owl not far away.  A Spotted Owl is much rarer than the screech owl, so that’s quite exciting, but sadly, it likely won’t hang around here to be seen.  The screech owl was quite a draw for birders at this place over the last few years.  The actual spot where one could see his roosting spot was marked with a blue flag, so people could stand in the perfect spot & look up.  That will now have to be removed.  Mother Nature can be cruel but it’s all a matter of perspective.  Boohoo anyway!

The caretakers were walking their cat, Georgie (named after Curious George) – who would love to get off the leash & hunt birds!  However, they told her in no uncertain terms that this is an animal sanctuary & no hunting is allowed by visitors!


They have a few bird feeders located at the checkin area here, including this one with a hovering Anna’s Hummingbird.  Anna’s seems to be the only hummer around for now but more will arrive later in the winter.


Here is a common sight while out walking the paths through the woods & along Sonoita Creek.


We stopped at Paton’s to check the bird feeders, but all was quiet there.  However, across the road in the top of some trees we found ANOTHER LIFER – Cassin’s Kingbird!  Bill had his camera in the car, so got it out for a few shots.  Here’s one, for the record.


One last little photo of a plain little bird we see quite a few of – it had such a curious expression – a Lincoln’s Sparrow (Jane – here I go singing that song!).


Today may be the last of the nice weather for a few days.  It is supposed to rain tomorrow & the next day & be at least 10 degrees cooler (highs around 11 C) – so we have really enjoyed how nice it’s been so far.  AZ needs the rain desperately, so I hope it pours!  We’re going into Nogales to do some shopping Friday.

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