Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

October 24, 2010

Gray Catbird – Bird of the Day

Filed under: Birds, Boyce Thompson Arboretum, favorite places — richditch @ 6:03 pm
Gray Catbird

Gray Catbird

Cindy West and I were co-leaders for the birdwalk this morning at Boyce Thompson Arboretum, where 17 participants enjoyed the cooler temperatures and some good birding as we hiked a couple miles of park trails.

About a half hour before the walk began my friend Brendon joined me as we checked  one of the more productive spots to see what was around, and almost immediately Brendon found this Gray Catbird low in a thick shrub by the entrance to the Demonstration Garden. A nice surprise for me, but less of a surprise for Brendon as he was pretty sure he’d heard a catbird in the same general area 2 weeks prior.

Gray Catbird is a scarce breeder in AZ, with a few birds nesting at high elevation in the White Mountains of eastern AZ near Springerville. Occasionally one is found somewhere in winter at lower elevations. This is my third one for AZ, and my first at Boyce. It was definitely not a bird I expected to see there this morning.

For the curious, here’s the list of the other birds we saw on the walk this morning (in order seen):

Anna’s Hummingbird, Gila Woodpecker, Green-tailed Towhee, Northern Cardinal, Verdin, Cooper’s Hawk, Common Raven, Northern Mockingbird, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Bewick’s Wren, Phainopepla, Broad-billed Hummingbird, Rock Wren, Curve-billed Thrasher, Ladder-backed Woodpecker, Red-naped Sapsucker, Lesser Goldfinch, Black Phoebe, Empidonax species flycatcher, White-crowned Sparrow, Cactus Wren, Marsh Wren, European Starling, House Finch, Red-tailed Hawk, Northern (red-shafted) Flicker, Abert’s Towhee, House Wren, Canyon Wren, Inca Dove, Plumbeous Vireo, and Orange-crowned Warbler.

Image: 10/24/2010, Nikon D200, 300/2.8 AF-S plus TC20E (2x), ISO 400, 1/500th second at f/8, tripod, 33% of frame.

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