Last weekend, Grana and I had a great time picking up some lifers and rare birds in the valley. The main highlight for me was finding the female Rose-throated Becard at Estero Llano Grande State Park. The secretive flycatcher is easy to miss since it's quiet and sneaks around the dense brush of the park's Tropical Zone. I spoke to some birders who had been there for 3 weeks and had still not seen the becard. They admitted they hadn't been trying very hard, but I had heard other stories of birders missing this rare flycatcher. When I tried to find the flycatcher on my first trip, there was no sign of the becard even though the park staff had seen it the day before.
I searched the large Tropical Zone for about an hour and was about to give up and move on to the next birding spot. But I decided to check in with the birders who had been around for 3 weeks.On my way to the feeding station and water drip where I had left them, I passed by a large tree that overshadowed an old house. Knowing the bird was usually seen high in tree canopies, I looked toward the top of the tree and lo and behold, I saw a cinnamon-backed bird with a long tail and dark face.
Grana and I spent a lot of time at the Brownsville Landfill. Among some of the birds we saw at the landfill included Chihuahan Raven, White-tailed hawk and thousands and thousand of gulls.
On the first day, we didn't find any rare gulls, but we did find a lone Peregrine Falcon.
|Lesser Black-backed Gull (Right) Herring Gull (Left)|
|A Great Blue Heron rests on the jetty at Boca Chica Beach with South Padre Island in background.|
|Any of you gardeners know what this is?|