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Shipman's field notes, Sep 2011


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2011-09-03: NM: Socorro County

@SocCo: Socorro County
@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
@home: Socorro: 507 Fitch
Observed a medium-sized Phrysonoma cornutum lizard attending my Pogonomyrmex ants in the driveway today at home.
Wigeon, American 2 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Last of last winter's leftovers.
Dove, White-winged 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Dove, Mourning 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Kingfisher, Belted 1♂ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Empidonax sp. # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Robin, American # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Warbler, MacGillivray's 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Tanager, Western 1♀ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Behavior: Gaping. It's hot out here.

2011-09-04: NM: Socorro-Melrose Woods-Clovis

Notable:  Yellow-bellied Flycatcher; American Redstart
@Mair: Mountainair area
@Mel: Melrose Woods
@day: Socorro-Melrose Woods-Clovis
@road1: Socorro to US-60^E via I-25
@road10: US-60^e, Fort Sumner to Roosevelt County
@road11: US-60^e, Roosevelt County to Melrose Woods
@road2: US-60^e, I-25 to NM-47
@road3: US-60^e, NM-47 to Mountainair
@road4: US-60^e, Mountainair-Willard
@road5: US-60^e, Willard-Encino
@road6: US-60^e, Encino-Vaughn
@road7: US-60^e, Vaughn to DeBaca County
Quite a number of small passerines on the road. Very few of them identified.
@road8: US-60^e, DeBaca County to Yeso
@road9: US-60^e, Yeso to Fort Sumner
Teal, Green-Winged 200 @Mountainair area
Pond just east of Mountainair.
Ibis, White-faced 1 @Mountainair area
Pond just east of Mountainair.
Vulture, Turkey 
@US-60^e, I-25 to NM-47
@US-60^e, Willard-Encino
@US-60^e, Vaughn to DeBaca County
Hawk, Swainson's 
1 @US-60^e, Willard-Encino
2 @US-60^e, Encino-Vaughn
1 @US-60^e, Yeso to Fort Sumner
1 @US-60^e, Fort Sumner to Roosevelt County
Kestrel, American 
@US-60^e, DeBaca County to Yeso
1 @Melrose Woods
Killdeer 1 @Mountainair area
Pond just east of Mountainair.
Pigeon, Rock @Socorro to US-60^E via I-25
Dove, Mourning 
# @US-60^e, NM-47 to Mountainair
@US-60^e, Roosevelt County to Melrose Woods
Hummingbird, Rufous 1♀ @Melrose Woods
Woodpecker, Red-headed 
1i @Melrose Woods
Breeding: Loudly begging, being fed by the adult. Did they breed here?
1a @Melrose Woods
Wood-Pewee, Western # @Melrose Woods
Flycatcher, Yellow-bellied 1 @Melrose Woods
Description: Quite striking all-yellow underparts. Complete yellowish eye-ring.
A lifer for me! Just as I arrived, Jonathan Batkin was just leaving the area, even backed his car a few feet, but then Martin MacRoberts pointed out the bird, which Jonathan had been trying to relocate for a couple of hours. Jonathan pulled back in, jumped out, and proceeded to hand me this bird on a silver platter within a minute of my first stepping out of my car. Thanks Jonathan!
Flycatcher, Least @Melrose Woods
Flycatcher, Gray 1 @Melrose Woods
Kingbird, Western @US-60^e, Mountainair-Willard
Shrike, Loggerhead 1 @US-60^e, Willard-Encino
Near mp227, east of the alkali lakes.
Vireo, Blue-headed @Melrose Woods
State bird for me! My only previous record was one 2005-08-15 at Cook Forest, PA.
raven sp. @US-60^e, Willard-Encino
Raven, Chihuahuan @US-60^e, Yeso to Fort Sumner
Raven, Common @US-60^e, NM-47 to Mountainair
In the piñnon-juniper habitat.
Swallow, Barn @Mountainair area
Wren, House # @Melrose Woods
Kinglet, Ruby-crowned # @Melrose Woods
Mockingbird, Northern @US-60^e, Yeso to Fort Sumner
Warbler, Yellow 
1♂ @Melrose Woods
1♀ @Melrose Woods
Description: I was trying to make its indistinct gray streaks into an Orange-crowned, but the streaks were mainly lateral to the breast (vs. the full width in Orange-crowned), and the face was plain yellow with a complete, not terribly thin yellow eyering.
Redstart, American 2♀ @Melrose Woods
Description: One bird had a much more prominent yellow wingbar. Saw the two near each other at one point.
Warbler, Wilson's # @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, Lark # @Melrose Woods
Bunting, Lark 
# @US-60^e, Mountainair-Willard
# @US-60^e, Vaughn to DeBaca County
Grosbeak, Black-headed 1♀ @Melrose Woods
Nothing rare about this bird in this location, but I really liked the way she posed close by in perfect light.
Bunting, Lazuli 1♀ @Melrose Woods

2011-09-05: NM: Clovis-Melrose Woods-Bitter Lake-Cheapskate Point

Notable:  Merlin; Willet; Yellow-bellied Flycatcher; Blue-headed Vireo; Blue-gray Gnatcatcher; Nashville Warbler; Black-throated Green Warbler; Black-and-white Warbler; Ovenbird
@BL: Bitter Lake N.W.R.
@Cheap: Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
@Mel: Melrose Woods
@day: Clovis-Melrose Woods-Bitter Lake-Cheapskate Point
@road1: Clovis-Melrose Woods
@road2: NM-330^s to NM-480
@road3: NM-330^s from NM-480 to Elida
@road4: US-70^w from Elida to Roswell
Shoveler, Northern # @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Heron, Great Blue 1 @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Egret, Snowy 1 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Vulture, Turkey # @US-70^w from Elida to Roswell
Harrier, Northern 1ϕ @NM-330^s to NM-480
Hawk, Swainson's 1 @NM-330^s from NM-480 to Elida
Hawk, Red-tailed @Clovis-Melrose Woods
Kestrel, American @Clovis-Melrose Woods
Merlin 1 @Melrose Woods
Stilt, Black-necked # @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Yellowlegs, Greater 1 @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Willet 1 @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Yellowlegs, Lesser 3 @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Collared-Dove, Eurasian @Clovis-Melrose Woods
Dove, Mourning @Clovis-Melrose Woods
Wood-Pewee, Western # @Melrose Woods
Flycatcher, Yellow-bellied 1 @Melrose Woods
Yesterday's prize was still around, lurking mainly in the low vegetation near the southwest corner of the regrown area.
Flycatcher, Least @Clovis-Melrose Woods-Bitter Lake-Cheapskate Point
Kingbird, Western 
# @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
1 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Flycatcher, Scissor-tailed 1 @US-70^w from Elida to Roswell
About 10 miles east of the Pecos River on US-70, milepost roughly 373.
Shrike, Loggerhead 1 @NM-330^s to NM-480
Vireo, Blue-headed 1 @Melrose Woods
Description: Distinctly pale-gray head with a sharp termination at the side of the throat. Back greenish with yellow-green flanks. Det. by J. Parmeter and J. Oldenettel.
Swallow, Cliff 
# @US-70^w from Elida to Roswell
# @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Swallow, Barn 
# @Melrose Woods
# @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Wren, House # @Melrose Woods
Gnatcatcher, Blue-gray 1 @Melrose Woods
Mockingbird, Northern 1 @Melrose Woods
Description: A bit scruffy-looking. Silent.
Warbler, Nashville 1 @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Virginia's 1 @Melrose Woods
Description: Mainly pale gray above and white below, with some yellow color at the sides of the breast, and a yellow vent.
Warbler, Black-throated Green 1 @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Black-and-white 1 @Melrose Woods
Redstart, American 2♀ @Melrose Woods
Ovenbird 1 @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Wilson's # @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, Chipping # @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, Lark 
# @US-70^w from Elida to Roswell
# @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Tanager, Western 1♀ @Melrose Woods
meadowlark sp. 
@Melrose Woods
# @Bitter Lake N.W.R.
Grackle, Great-tailed @Clovis-Melrose Woods
Sparrow, House @Clovis-Melrose Woods

2011-09-06: NM: Rattlesnake Springs-Holloman Lakes-Socorro

Notable:  Gray Hawk; Gray Catbird
@Cheap: Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
@Holl: Holloman Lake
@RS: Rattlesnake Springs
@day: Rattlesnake Springs-Holloman Lakes-Socorro
@road1: Artesia to Cloudcroft
@road2: Alamogordo to Holloman Lake
@road3: Tularosa to Carrizozo
@road4: Carrizozo to San Antonio
Shoveler, Northern # @Holloman Lake
Turkey, Wild 32 @Rattlesnake Springs
Heron, Great Blue 7 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Egret, Snowy 1 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Vulture, Turkey # @Rattlesnake Springs
Hawk, Broad-winged / Hawk, Gray 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Behavior: As I arrived not long after sunup, this hawk, which looked roughly Buteo-sized or maybe a bit smaller, was harassing the roosting Turkey Vultures in the trees near the entrance, charging them and knocking several of them off their perches. He then perched briefly, allowing these photos.
Dr. John P. Hubbard (pers.comm.) says this immature bird is likely either a Broad-winged Hawk or a Gray Hawk; he says some birds are very difficult to separate without careful examination of the outer primaries. He cites a collection by Bill Howe on 1980-09-25, one mile east of Artesia, which they initially identified as an immature Gray Hawk but was later determined to be an immature Broad-winged Hawk.
Hawk, Gray 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Plover, Snowy 1 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Phalarope, Wilson's # @Holloman Lake
Gull, Ring-billed 2 @Brantley Lake: Cheapskate Point
Pigeon, Rock @Alamogordo to Holloman Lake
Dove, Mourning # @Rattlesnake Springs
Flicker, Red-shafted 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Wood-Pewee, Western # @Rattlesnake Springs
Empidonax sp. @Rattlesnake Springs
Phoebe, Black 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Flycatcher, Vermilion # @Rattlesnake Springs
Kingbird, Cassin's # @Rattlesnake Springs
Kingbird, Western # @Rattlesnake Springs
Vireo, Bell's # @Rattlesnake Springs
raven sp. 1 @Carrizozo to San Antonio
Raven, Chihuahuan 2 @Tularosa to Carrizozo
Description: Positive ID because one was facing into the wind and showed his white neck underfeathering.
Raven, Common 1 @Artesia to Cloudcroft
Swallow, Barn # @Rattlesnake Springs
Verdin 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Catbird, Gray 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Lurking near the pond.
Warbler, Yellow-rumped 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Warbler, Audubon's 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Warbler, Wilson's # @Rattlesnake Springs
Chat, Yellow-breasted # @Rattlesnake Springs
Sparrow, Chipping # @Rattlesnake Springs
Sparrow, Clay-colored 1 @Rattlesnake Springs
Sparrow, Lark # @Rattlesnake Springs
Sparrow, Black-throated # @Rattlesnake Springs
Bunting, Lark # @Rattlesnake Springs
Tanager, Summer # @Rattlesnake Springs
Tanager, Western ♀ @Rattlesnake Springs
Cardinal, Northern # @Rattlesnake Springs
Pyrrhuloxia 1♀ @Rattlesnake Springs
Finch, House # @Rattlesnake Springs
Goldfinch, Lesser # @Rattlesnake Springs

2011-09-07: NM: Socorro County

@BdA: Bosque del Apache NWR
Nearly as dead as I've ever seen it. No shorebird habitat in evidence. I took a total of five photos, vs. about 330 over the preceding three days.
@SocCo: Socorro County
@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
@road1: Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
Cormorant, Neotropic 3 @Bosque del Apache NWR
Ibis, White-faced # @Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
Vulture, Turkey # @Bosque del Apache NWR
Accipiter sp. 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Hawk, Swainson's 1 @Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
Kestrel, American # @Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
hummingbird sp. 1♀ @Bosque del Apache NWR
Kingfisher, Belted 1♂ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Wood-Pewee, Western # @Bosque del Apache NWR
Phoebe, Black 
1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
# @Bosque del Apache NWR
Kingbird, Western # @Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
Shrike, Loggerhead 1 @Luis Lopez to Bosque del Apache N.W.R.
Vireo, Warbling 1 @Bosque del Apache NWR
Warbler, Wilson's 
# @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
# @Bosque del Apache NWR
Sparrow, Lark # @Bosque del Apache NWR
Tanager, Western 
1♂ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
1♀ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Goldfinch, Lesser # @Bosque del Apache NWR

2011-09-13: NM: Socorro: 507 Fitch

@home: Socorro: 507 Fitch
Kingbird, Cassin's 2 @Socorro: 507 Fitch
On wires behind my house, as seems to happen each year during migration, especially near sundown.
Kingbird, Western 3 @Socorro: 507 Fitch

2011-09-14: NM: Socorro: 507 Fitch

@home: Socorro: 507 Fitch
Wren, House 1 @Socorro: 507 Fitch

2011-09-23: NM: Socorro: 507 Fitch

@home: Socorro: 507 Fitch
Crow, American [fide Richard LeRoy] @Socorro: 507 Fitch
First of the fall.

2011-09-24: NM: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay

@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Robin, American 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay

2011-09-25: NM: Socorro: New Mexico Tech

@NMT: Socorro: New Mexico Tech
Hawk, Cooper's 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech
Behavior: Standing and pluming what looked to be a large dove, White-winged Dove or Eurasian Collared-Dove.

2011-09-26: NM: Socorro

Notable:  Scarlet Tanager
@Soc: Socorro
@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
@home: Socorro: 507 Fitch
Phoebe, Black 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Wren, House 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Robin, American # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Thrasher, Curve-billed 1 @Socorro: 507 Fitch
Warbler, Wilson's # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Tanager, Scarlet 1♀ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
South of Macey Center there is a small playground. Standing south of this playground, about halfway to Blue Canyon Road, looking west, the bird was busily consuming Russian Olive fruit in the treetops.
Description: Yellow-green overall except entire folded wing very dark, no trace of a wingbar. Thick tanager bill.
A stakeout. Sonja Mendoza found it but wasn't clear on the ID. I'm not sure who called it and alerted the network, but thanks!
Bunting, Lazuli 1♀ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Description: I'm not entirely positive about the ID here. The massive bill rules out finches. It seems to me to come down to either Lazuli or Indigo Bunting, but the latter would have some streakiness to the breast, and less prominent wingbars.

2011-09-28: NM: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay

Notable:  Scarlet Tanager
@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Robin, American # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Warbler, Wilson's 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Tanager, Summer @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Tanager, Scarlet 1♀ @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Same place, same behavior as yesterday.
Sparrow, House # @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay

2011-09-30: NM: Socorro-Melrose Woods

Notable:  Black-billed Cuckoo; Whip-poor-will; Ruby-throated Hummingbird; White-eyed Vireo; Townsend's Solitaire; Wood Thrush
@Mel: Melrose Woods
@TBay: Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
@day: Socorro-Melrose Woods
@road1: US-60, Bernardo-Socorro/Torrance line
@road2: US-60, Socorro/Torrance line to Willard
@road3: US-60, Willard to Encino
@road4: US-60, Encino to jct US-54 near Vaughn
@road5: US-60, Vaughn to Yeso
@road6: US-60, Yeso to Fort Sumner
@road7: US-60, Fort Sumner to DeBaca/Roosevelt line
0950, look in Turtle Bay for a few minutes.
1115, leave Lemitar, I-25^N, US-60^E.
1455, arrive Melrose Woods. Left around 1835.
Wigeon, American 5 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Teal, Cinnamon 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Vulture, Turkey 2 @US-60, Willard to Encino
Hawk, Swainson's 
2 @US-60, Willard to Encino
1 @US-60, Encino to jct US-54 near Vaughn
1 @US-60, Fort Sumner to DeBaca/Roosevelt line
Hawk, Red-tailed @US-60, Bernardo-Socorro/Torrance line
Kestrel, American 1 @Melrose Woods
Dove, Mourning @US-60, Socorro/Torrance line to Willard
Cuckoo, Black-billed 1 @Melrose Woods
Initially found in two quite small cottonwoods hard by the road, northeast of the “pit.”
Description: Pretty unmistakable, with the brown face contrasting with the paler throat, the straight, short black bill, and the rounded white tail corners seen from above.
I was driving toward the woods when I saw John Parmeter run toward me waving his arms and shouting. I knew right away it had to be a pretty good bird; John is usually pretty blasé about anything short of incredible. He wisely advised me to jump out of my car and leave it where it sat and run over. I got these photos within a minute or so and never saw the bird again. Some others relocated it in the larger cottonwoods northeast of the tank, but a lot of people worked pretty hard to see it at all. This was John's state bird, but not mine—I saw one at Rattlesnake Springs 1989-09-15, and the photos are in these notes for that month.
Whip-poor-will 1 @Melrose Woods
Sitting on the ground just a few inches north of the fence near the northwest corner.
Nobody was calling which side of the recent Eastern vs. Mexican Whip-poor-will split this bird was on. Thanks to Raymond van Buskirk and Michael Hilchey for the point.
Hummingbird, Ruby-throated 1 @Melrose Woods
Description: ID points I heard from the experts: two dark feathers on the bottom of the gorget; short straight bill; forked tail; flanks gray-green, not rufous. The third photo seems to show a little warm color on the lower side, but this was an artifact of a stray ray of the late afternoon sun reaching back to where the bird was perched near the north-side feeder.
Selasphorus sp. @Socorro-Melrose Woods
Compared to the Ruby-throated Hummingbird, these photo shows the longer, more decurved bill, the very even speckling on the throat, and the warm color on the sides.
Sapsucker, Red-naped 1 @Melrose Woods
Vireo, White-eyed 1 @Melrose Woods
Seen all over the trap by many. Stayed low in the knee-high poplars most of the time.
Thanks to John Parmeter who pointed out this and several other great rarities today. End of a longstanding jinx. Philip Johnson and I searched high and low in the corners of the state back in the 1980s for this and Red-eyed Vireo; the latter continues to elude me.
raven sp. 
@US-60, Bernardo-Socorro/Torrance line
1 @US-60, Vaughn to Yeso
1 @US-60, Yeso to Fort Sumner
Raven, Chihuahuan # @US-60, Willard to Encino
One, called by habitat on the flats between the NM-47 junction and the former Blue Springs Cafe, was standing on a roadkill snake.
Wren, Bewick's 1 @Melrose Woods
Kinglet, Ruby-crowned # @Melrose Woods
Solitaire, Townsend's 1 @Melrose Woods
Thrush, Hermit # @Melrose Woods
Thrush, Wood 1 @Melrose Woods
Generally seen walking in the middle of the woods.
Description: Bright red-brown back, close to the back color of a Brown Thrasher. Crisp round blackish spots on the breast.
Warbler, Orange-crowned # @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Virginia's 1 @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Audubon's # @Melrose Woods
Warbler, Wilson's 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay
Towhee, Green-tailed 1 @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, Chipping # @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, Lincoln's 1 @Melrose Woods
Sparrow, White-crowned 
1i @Melrose Woods
2a @Melrose Woods
Tanager, Summer 1 @Socorro: New Mexico Tech: Turtle Bay

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Last updated: 2011-10-25 11:42 MDT