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Thursday, April 30, 2015

A superb day

Started out at 35° but warmed up to 82° by mid-afternoon. As I was waiting for it to warm up enough to spread the coating in the tank I heard a quail call. And it wasn't a Scaled Quail, the only quail I've ever seen on my place. So I got excited knowing it was either a Montezuma or a Gambel's. When I located it, it was a Gambel's Quail. New yard bird. And let me tell you, new yard birds are hard to come by these days. I tried to photograph it but it was between me and the early morning sun. Here is my best shot.

 It was quite a ways off and when I tried to make a large circle around it to get the sun to my back it flew. I saw where it flew to. A short while later two quail flew from that area. So I presume it had been calling to a mate.

Here I am painting myself into a corner.

And finally done. A job I thought would take one day took 3 or 4. I have some coating left so I will probably put a second coat on the bad areas but that'll only take a few minutes.

After I finished, I sat down under the mulberry trees to see what was coming in (same as I did yesterday). Shortly, I heard a human voice calling out. I assumed there wasn't a human within a mile of me. Then appeared a most interesting birder. He had heard about being able to see Lucifer Hummingbirds here from someone in the park, after an unsuccessful attempt there hiking Blue Creek Trail. With no directions or contact info he had previously made a failed attempt to find CMO. But he tried again and after many wrong roads, he got here. He was in a small motor home and wisely decided to walk the last half mile of my road. 

Soon a female Lucifer showed up at a feeder, then a male displayed to her a bit and they were gone before he could get a photo. So I took him down to the male's territory where he got plenty of photos, although not as close as a feeder shot would have been. His lifer Lucifer.

When he was ready to leave I took him down to his vehicle parked along the road. Suddenly we heard Peregrines screaming, as only Peregrines can scream. Brandon was immediately able to spot them and the nest. 

So I finally have the nest location. When I get time I'm determined to get photos of a Peregrine at the nest. For now, here's the nest.

The nest, per Brandon, is above and to the right of the darkest oblong hole near the center of the photo.

With my guidance he easily got his vehicle turned around and headed to his next lifer quest somewhere in NM.

Next, my dear friends, Dennis Shepler and his significant other, Jenny, visited. While sitting under the mulberry tree we heard the Elf Owl call from the nearest mulberry tree. I couldn't spot it, but Dennis did. Couldn't resist more Elf Owl photos. He's just too cute! Besides I didn't have one taken in a mulberry tree ever.

Dennis and Jenny
I'm amazed that one Catclaw Acacia is in total bloom and none of the others have started. 

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