Sunday, September 23, 2012

Colorado Bird List

After 19 days in Colorado my list of bird sightings would fall into the paltry category to most serious birders.  But I am quite happy with it because each sighting represents a bird that I stopped and watched—usually while hiking a beautiful trail. 

I do not like to chase after and glance at birds to create a long list of personal sightings.  I like to stop and watch the seasonally common birds of a given habitat as they go about their lives, doing what comes naturally to them.  Long looks to observe behavior, while listening to their different calls, alerts and songs, is always great fun. 

I mainly hiked, with binoculars around my neck, leaving the 400 mm lens in its case.  I have no great bird photos to share.  I did take one last walk with the 400mm, just before packing up to head south for New Mexico, and have included a couple of photos.

Whether a beginning birder or a seasoned birder, I encourage keeping a list of sightings when visiting a new region or state.  I documented, but am not including in this list, the very common species sighted such as Vultures, Rock Doves and House Sparrows.

My Colorado bird list of interesting sightings, September 2012 with an (*) representing new species to my life list:

Red-tailed Hawk
American Kestrel
Wild Turkey
Mourning Dove
White-throated Swift
Broad-tailed Hummingbird
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Olive-sided Flycatcher* (Lookout Mountain, Golden area)
Dusky Flycatcher* (Lookout Mountain, Golden area)
Steller’s Jay
Black-billed Magpie
American Crow
Common Raven
Horned Lark
Black-capped Chickadee
Mountain Chickadee
Red-breasted Nuthatch
White-breasted Nuthatch
Pygmy Nuthatch
Rock Wren
House Wren
Golden-crowned Kinglet
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Western Bluebird
American Robin
Orange-crowned Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Townsend’s Warbler* (Golden Gate Canyon SP and Cheyenne Mtn SP)
Chipping Sparrow
Brewer’s Sparrow
Vesper Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
House Finch
Lesser Goldfinch
American Goldfinch

And two BVDs (better views desired) that I would love to include but am not:

Mountain Bluebird
Townsend’s Solitaire

The Red-shafted Northern Flicker was very common at Cheyenne Mountain:


The Spotted Towhee was also very common at Cheyenne Mountain:


Next stop, Northern New Mexico!  May all your days be birdy days…

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