Cloudcroft/Mescalero Fieldtrip, August 5, 2017.   We visited the Mescalero Fish Hatchery, in Mescalero, NM, which was our first visit there.  It had been very hot in El Paso and temperature there was a nice cool 62 degrees.  There is a nature trail, wetlands and a visitor center.  The only fish raised there are trout.  Along the creek trail there was lots of trees with berries and birds.  Some of the birds were gorging themselves on the berries and would not even fly.  The best bird was a Gray Catbird.  We also saw an Eastern Phoebe, Lesser Goldfinch, Acorn Woodpecker, Woodhouse Scrub-Jay, and Steller's Jay.  From the Hatchery we headed over to Cloudcroft.  On the way, we saw Western Bluebirds.  In Cloudcroft we ate lunch at the Trestle Picnic Area.   We then went to Bluff Springs Waterfall where we saw Dark-eyed Junco and Hermit Thrush and headed back to El Paso.

 

Down the Valley Reservoirs, Saturday, August 19, 2017.  We started at McNary and on the farms roads leading to the McNary Reservoir we saw Lazuli Bunting, Cassin's Kingbird, Loggerhead Shrike, Barn Owl, American Kestrel, Red-tailed Hawk, Mississippi Kite, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Great Blue Heron, and Greater Roadrunner.  The water at the Reservoirs was very high, so there were very few shore birds, but we saw lots of Clark's and Western Grebes.  We also saw Eared and Pied-billed Grebes, Forster's Tern, Black Tern, American Avocet, Green Heron, Black-necked Stilts and Ruddy Duck.  The Tornillo and Ft. Hancock Reservoirs had basically the same things we saw at McNary.  A quick stop at Rio Bosque where we saw a pair of White-tailed Kites and Western Wood-Pewee and Burrowing Owl and we headed home.

 

Percha Dam, Saturday, September 9, 2017.  We got an early start and the morning was cool.  The montane migration was evident.  We saw six species of warblers - Townsend's, MacGillivray's, Yellow, Lucy's, Wilson's, and the best one - American Redstart female.  There was such an infiltration of Wilson's Warblers there it seemed like every tree had one or more.  Other birds seen were Warbling Vireo, Plumbeous Vireo, White-breasted Nuthatch, Western Tanager, Blue Grosbeak, Olive-sided Flycatcher, Vermilion Flycatcher and Western Wood-Pewee.  In the river we saw Great Egrets, Great Blue Heron, Spotted Sandpiper and a female Common Merganser.  We also saw several Raptors.  We ate our lunch there and headed back to El Paso.Type your paragraph here.

Notes from the Field

    

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El Paso/Trans-Pecos Audubon Society