This is a weekly bird report written and photographed by our Interpretive Guide and Birder John Brush.
As we were walking up to the Discovery Center this morning, we came across Christine and saw that she was watching some Red-crowned Parrots, and a Lilac Crowned Parrot (possibly escaped pet) (photos by Christine) in a couple large Coral Beans! I’m assuming they were eating the beans themselves, but the birds quickly flushed. A good start to the morning walk, one that yielded 47 species of bird!
As we started onto the trails, we quickly ran into a bunch of migrant birds, such as this Gray Catbird. Migration is still going, with warblers still passing through and Empidonax flycatchers just starting to hit their peak.
This Buff-bellied Hummingbird was very cooperative, sitting just a couple meters off the trail. I believe this bird is a juvenile because it really doesn’t have much of the bright green throat that you’d typically see on adults. Also notice the overall dark bill and muted colors. If you can watch for hummingbirds when they dive into a thicket, you’re often rewarded with some great looks!
This is yet another shot of an Epidonax flycatcher. This one, after reviewing several guides, looks to be an Acadian Flycatcher. William, who also was snapping a few shots of this bird, noticed that above the eye there appears to be a parasite of some sort (not sure what kind, however). Like other animals, birds will have some specialized parasites that feed only on them, such as Hippoboscid flies.
The Bird of the Day was the skulking MacGillivray’s Warbler that we only got a few glimpses of (too quick to get any photos). This photo (creative commons photo) really shows the distinctive field mark of the MacGillivray’s Warbler – the wide broken eye-ring. The similar Mourning Warbler also has the dark hood, yellow belly, but lacks the broken eye ring. MacGillivray’s Warblers are listed as occasional visitors to the LRGV, as their range and migration route it mostly to the west.
Join us for our last bird walk of the Spring – Tuesday, May 21st at 8:30am. Then, join us for a Birding and Nature Walk at 8:30am every Saturday throughout the summer (starting June 1st)!