I mentioned last post about the hundreds of Red-winged Blackbirds that hang out in Falcon State Park (and many sites in the Southwest.) I also mentioned the Pyrrhuloxia which are everywhere. These members of the Cardinal family are native to Texas and Mexico and are fun to watch. Here’s a shot I took this afternoon of a female alongside the park road.
The Crested Caracara, sometimes called the “Mexican Eagle,” is a spectacular low-flyer who is easy to identify and very common along highways in this area. It feeds on carrion and lizards and small mammals and it’s unusual not to see a few any time you bird in this area. They too are Texas/Mexico birds.
One of the most prevalent birds here seems to be the orange-crowned warbler. The plain little green birds are everywhere — to the point that I have yet to take a picture of one. Of course, like most warblers, they don’t sit for portraits but rather move briskly along from branch to branch. They have no markings per se — and that in itself is an identifying characteristic.
Another common bird here is the Great-tailed Grackle. We started seeing them as we hit Texas and they are everywhere — not in Red-winged Blackbird numbers, but noticeable because of their size and their raucous calls. They love to hang out in mall parking lots.
Other birds we see each walk are Greater Roadrunners, Northern Cardinals, Inca Doves, and Northern Mockingbirds. I suspect that the warming weather will crank up birding activity — both the birds and the birders have been waiting out this wintry blast.