Water Ranch May 10 and May 17, 2014

I made a couple more trips to Water Ranch in Gilbert in May. This post has some photos.

May is a good time to visit RPWR because it’s still not too hot (here in the Phoenix area), and the migrant birds are still passing through. I’ve heard reports of quite a few migrant warblers at RPWR and hoped I might photograph some. So I went early on Saturday to avoid the Saturday hikers, dog walkers, families, etc. The only migrant warbler I saw was the Townsend’s Warbler. Other than that it was the usuals for this time of year. I photographed my first Northern Rough-winged Swallow. They are very common here in the summer, but they are usually ‘on the wing’. The Gambel’s Quail is also common, but they are usually hiding in the bushes. This one was on a stump calling. The Green Heron chick came tumbling down the tree and managed to catch itself before it hit the ground. I assume it fell out of a nest, but I couldn’t see the nest.

There is a Saguaro ‘garden’ near the park area at the preserve. There are about a dozen Saguaros, and there were active nests for a Curve-billed Thrasher (between the arms of a cactus), a European Starling, and a Gila Woodpecker (both in cavities in the cacti). I was trying to photograph some nesting activity when a loud Drone came flying over and scared the birds away. The Drone was loud and annoying, and the operator hovered it around the saguaro for about 10 minutes before I finally lost patience and left.

Here are the photos:

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