Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Newsletter



Chapala Birders Newsletter July 2, 2018
100 Species Sighted Last Month
June is the beginning of the season of "confusing immatures". Many young birds are difficult to identify when they have been out of the nest for only a few weeks.
In the last two weeks we have been receiving a number of email photos of Sparkling-tailed Hummingbirds taken at local feeders. (See photo and details below.)
Visiting birder Jules Evens from the U.S. has been focussing on San Antonio Tlayacapan for the month of June. He has seen: Roseate Spoonbill, Aztec Rail, Least Bittern and Purple Gallinule.
Wood Storks continue to found on the Rosa Amarilla Loop, and as usual, several hundred one-year-old American White Pelicans have stayed behind to enjoy the summer on Lake Chapala instead of helping out with their families breeding up north.
Sparkling-tailed Hummingbird
Sparkling-tailed Hummingbird (male) photo by Jalisco birder Julio Alvarez.  

Species details:


-  The Sparkling-tailed Hummingbird is a small hummingbird weighing only 3 grams.
-  Both male and female may be identified by a sizable white side-rump patch. The male has a long forked tail, which is often raised when feeding. The female looks very different from the male, having cinnamon underparts and hardly any tail.
-  The species range extends from northern Mexico down to northern Nicaragua. It is non-migratory, only moving locally according to season.
They come to Ajijic for two months in May and June to breed.
Upcoming Trips and Bird Walks
Our bird walks are open to all those interested in birds, both beginners and experienced birders. Just bring binoculars. We always have knowledgeable birders on hand to identify the species. If you are being given a ride, please make a contribution to gas and tolls (perhaps 50-100 pesos for a half day outing, 100-200 for a day trip).
 
On Friday, July 13 we will meet at 8.00 am at Donas Donuts. leaving immediately for Agua Escondida and the Two Dams (20 minutes drive). We may see Fulvous Whistling Duck, Northern Jacana, and a variety of other water birds, woodpeckers and orioles. At about 10.15 we will go to Las Delicias for breakfast and complete the bird list. If you plan on going, please email John at chapalabirders@yahoo.com ahead of time saying whether you can bring a vehicle, to help in carpool planning. (We don't always have enough cars).

On Thursday, July 26 we will meet at 8.00 am at Donas Donuts to car pool, proceeding immediately to the Cajititlan Marsh (30 minute drive)). We expect to see a variety of marsh and lake birds, and perhaps a Sinaloa Wren. At about 10.15 we will go Las Delicias restaurant in Chapala for breakfast and complete the bird list. If you plan on going, email John: Chapalabirders@yahoo.com ahead of time indicating whether or not you will have a car. (We don't always have enough cars).
Bird Walk & Trip Reports
On June 11 there were four keen birders on the trip to the Sierra de Tapalpa. Despite overcast skys and rain at one point we saw fourty eight species including Eastern Bluebird, Pygmy Nuthatch, White-eared Hummingbird, Gray Silky Flycatcher, Tufted Flycatcher, Pine Siskin and Striped Sparrow.

On June 22 we had seven people out at Cristiania Park in Chapala. We identified Northern Jacana, Aztec Rail, Rufous-backed Robin, the endemic Black-backed Oriole, and hundreds of Black-crowned Night Herons which have established a large rookery where they are now breeding in the park.
Monthly Sightings List
Here are the 100 species sighted around Lake Chapala in June:

Ani, groove-billed
Avocet, American (Ca)
Bittern, least (Sa)
Blackbird, red-winged (Ra)
Bluebird, eastern (Ra)
Bobwhite, northern (Sn)
Bunting, varied (At)
Bushtit
Caracara, crested
Coot, American
Cormorant, neotropic
Cowbird, bronzed
Cuckoo, squirrel
Dove, Eurasian collared
Dove, Inca
Dove, mourning Ra)
Dove, white-winged
Duck, Fulvous whistling
Duck, Mexican
Duck, ruddy
Egret, cattle
Egret, great
Egret, snowy
Elaenia, greenish (At)
Finch, house
Flycatcher, dusky-capped (At,Sa)
Flycatcher, gray silky
Flycatcher, social
Flycatcher, vermilion
Gallinule, common
Gallinule, purple (Sa)
Goldfinch, lesser
Grackle, great-tailed
Grebe, least (Ra)
Grebe, pied-billed (Ra,Av)
Grosbeak, blue
Gull, ring-billed
Hawk, Cooper's (Ra)
Hawk, red-tailed (Ra,At)
Heron, black-crowned night
Heron, great blue (Ca,Ra)
Heron, green
Heron, little blue (Av)
Heron, tri-colored
Hummingbird, berylline
Hummingbird, broad-billed
Hummingbird, sparkling-tailed (Av,Tu)
Hummingbird, violet-crowned
Hummingbird, white-eared
Ibis, white-faced
Jacana, northern
Killdeer
Kingbird, Cassin's
Kingbird, thick-billed
Kingbird, tropical
Kiskadee, great
Meadowlark, eastern (Ra)
Mockingbird, blue
Mockingbird, northern
Motmot, russet-crowned
Nightjar, buff-collared
Oriole, black-backed
Oriole, black-vented
Oriole, streak-backed
Parakeet, monk
Pelican, American white (Ch,Sn)
Pewee, western wood
Pigeon, rock
Raven, common
Robin, rufous-backed
Seedeater, white-collared
Shrike, loggerhead
Sparrow, Botteri's (Ra)
Sparrow, chipping
Sparrow, house
sparrow, rusty-crowned ground
Sparrow, stripe-headed
Spoonbill, roseate (Sa)
Stilt, black-necked
Stork, wood
Swallow, barn
Swallow, cliff
Swallow, northern rough-winged
Tern, Caspian
Thrasher, curve-billed
Thrush, orange-billed nightingale
Towhee, canyon
Tyrannulet, northern beardless
Vireo, golden (At)
Vulture, black
Vulture, turkey
Warbler, rufous-capped (At)
Woodpecker, golden-fronted
Woodpecker, ladder-backed
Wren, Bewick's
Wren, canyon
Wren, happy (Sa)
Wren, Sinaloa (Ca,At)
Wren, spotted
Yellowthroat, common

Location codes:
Ac - Ajijic: La Cristina/El Bajio
At - Trails above Ajijic
Av - Ajijic village
Ca - Lake Cajititlan
Ch - Chapala
Cu - Cuitzeo/Ocotlan
Dm - Dike near Malteraña
Dp - Dike near La Palma
Hv - Hidden Valley oak forest
Ja - Jamay
La - La Cañada-Hidden Valley
Jo - Jocotepec
Ld - Lerma & Duero rivers
Pe - Petatan area
Ps - Pumping Station/Santa Cruz
Pt - San Pedro Tesistan area
Pz - San Pedro Itzican area
Ra - Rosa Amarilla loop
Rc - Santa Rosa/Carnero dam
Rp - Riberas del Pilar & canyon
Sa - San Antonio/Allen Lloyd Trail
Sc - San Juan Cosala
Sn - San Nicholas/Golf Club
Tz - Tizapan canyon
Te - San Juan Tecomatlan/Mezcala
Tr - Las Trojes/oak forest
Tu - Tuxcueca/San Luis Soyatlan
Xt - Ixtlahuacan/Las Campanillas
John&Rosemary
Lake Chapala Birders is an informal group of bird observers led by John and Rosemary Keeling. Don't hesitate to contact us if you are seeking information about birding in the area. We also like to hear about sightings of birds or nests at: chapalabirders@yahoo.com or 376.766.1801. Check out the website: chapalabirders.org

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Newsletter



Chapala Birders Newsletter June 2, 2018
101 Species Sighted Last Month
In May our big news was confirmation by the expert birders at eBird, that the owl that was seen by Duncan Poole in April and again in December 2014 in the oak forest high above Las Trojes at 7,500 feet, was the rare and endangered Mexican Spotted Owl.
Other interesting sightings were:
- A Northern Parula (the first sighting at Lake Chapala) seen on our May 14 trip to the Rosa Amarilla Loop.
-  A relatively uncommon Happy Wren hiding in the hillside undergrowth on the May 7 birdwalk on the Allen Lloyd Trail.
Mexican Spotted Owl
     Mexican Spotted Owl (from Wikipedia) with insert showing the photo
     taken by Duncan Poole in the oak forest above Las Trojes in 2014,
     (identification recently confirmed by experts at eBird).

Species details:

-  The Mexican Spotted Owl is one of three subspecies of the "Mottled Owl". It is brown with oval white spots and often exhibits an "X" pattern of white feathers between the eyes.
-  We are near the southern end of its range which runs from Michoacan up the Eastern and Western Sierra Madre ranges to Arizona and New Mexico.
-  It inhabits high-altitude pine-oak forests between 6,000 to 9,000 feet, prefering old mature forests with large trees.
-  It is rare and endangered as its reproduction rate is low - pairs mate for life, making nests only two years out of three with average clutch size of two to three eggs.
-  It hunts between sunset and dawn swooping down on small mammals such as mice and squirrels.
Upcoming Trips and Bird Walks
Our bird walks are open to all those interested in birds, both beginners and experienced birders. Just bring binoculars and show up. We always have knowledgeable birders on hand to identify the species. If you are being given a ride, please make a contribution to gas and tolls (perhaps 50-100 pesos for a half day outing, 100-200 for a day trip).
 
On Monday June 11, we will meet at 8.00 am at Donas Donuts, leaving immediately for the Sierra de Tapalpa (90 minutes away). We will bird from 9.30 till 12.30 and have lunch in the town of Tapalpa and complete the bird list. We expect to see higher altitude birds such as Acorn Woodpecker and Slate-throated Redstart and if we are lucky Trans-volcanic Jay. Bring your own refreshments for the morning. We will be back about 5.00 pm. If you plan on going, please email John at chapalabirders@yahoo.com ahead of time saying whether you can bring a vehicle.

On Friday June 22, we will meet at 8.30 am at the entrance to Cristiania Park in Chapala. We should see an interesting selection of species in the tall trees and on the shore of the lake. At about 10.30 we will go to 'La Palapa de Don Juan' for breakfast and complete the bird list.
How to Get There: From Ajijic go to the traffic light at the main street of Chapala (Av. Madero), cross straight over and keep going straight for five blocks, turn left at the T intersection and park on the right. (If the streets are under construction turn down to the lake and follow the lakeshore to the park entrance.) 
Bird Walk & Trip Reports
On May 7 we had a group of five birders hiking up the Allen Lloyd Trail managing to see a good variety of less common birds including Tropical Parula, Happy Wren, Greenish Elaenia, Northern Beardless Tyrannulet,  Rufous-Capped Warbler and Rusty-Crowned Ground Sparrow, totalling 40 species.

On May 12 another group of five travelled to the Rosa Amarilla Loop above the south side of the lake encountering 60 species which included a Northern Parula (first sighting at Lake Chapala), Western Wood Pewee, Spotted Wren, Botteri's Sparrow, Eastern Bluebird, the endemic Black-vented Oriole and sixty Wood Storks.
Monthly Sightings List
Here are the 101 species sighted around Lake Chapala in May:

Ani, groove-billed
Avocet, American (Ca)
Bittern, least (Ch)
Blackbird, red-winged (Ra)
Bluebird, eastern (Ra)
Bobwhite, northern
Bushtit
Caracara, crested
Coot, American
Cormorant, neotropic
Cowbird, bronzed
Cuckoo, squirrel
Dove, Eurasian, collared
Dove, Inca
Dove, mourning
Dove, white-tipped
Dove, white-winged
Duck, Mexican
Duck, ruddy (Ra)
Egret, cattle
Egret, great
Egret, snowy
Elaenia, greenish
Finch, house
Flycatcher, dusky-capped
Flycatcher, gray silky
Flycatcher, social
Flycatcher, vermilion
Gallinule, common
Goldfinch, lesser
Grackle, great-tailed
Grebe, pied-billed (Ra)
Grosbeak, black-headed
Grosbeak, blue
Gull, ring-billed
Hawk, red-tailed
Heron, black-crowned night
Heron, green (Ch)
Heron, tri-colored
Hummingbird, berylline
Hummingbird, broad-billed
Hummingbird, white-crowned
Ibis, white-faced
Jacana, northern
Killdeer
Kingbird, Cassin's
Kingbird, Western (Sa)
Kiskadee, great
Meadowlark, eastern (Ra)
Mockingbird, blue
Mockingbird, northern (Ra)
Motmot, russet-crowned (Sa)
Oriole black, backed
Oriole, black-vented
Oriole, streak-backed
Owl, ferruginous pygmy (Ch)
Owl, northern pygmy
Owl, great-horned
Parakeet, monk
Parula, tropical (Sa)
Pelican, American white
Pewee, western wood
Pigeon, rock
Rail. Aztec (Jo)
Raven, common
Robin, rufous-backed
Seedeater, white-collared
Sora (Ch,Tu)
Sparrow, Botteri's (Ra)
Sparrow, house
Sparrow, Lark
Sparrow rusty-crowned ground
Sparrow, Savannah
Sparrow, stripe-headed
Stilt, black-necked
Stork, wood
Swallow, barn
Swallow, cliff
Swallow, northern rough-winged
Tanager, western (Sa)
Teal, blue-winged
Teal, cinnamon
Tern, Caspian
Tern, Forster's
Thrasher, curve-billed
Towhee, canyon
Tyrannulet, northern, beardless
Vireo, warbling (Sa)
Vulture, black
Warbler, rufous-capped (Sa)
Warbler, Wilson's
Warbler, Yellow
Warbler, yellow-rumped
Whip-poor-will, Mexican (Sc)
Woodpecker, golden-fronted
Woodpecker, ladder-backed
Wren, Bewick's
Wren, canyon
Wren, spotted
Yellowthroat, common
Yellowthroat, gray-crowned
Location codes:
Ac - Ajijic: La Cristina/El Bajio
At - Trails above Ajijic
Av - Ajijic village
Ca - Lake Cajititlan
Ch - Chapala
Cu - Cuitzeo/Ocotlan
Dm - Dike near Malteraña
Dp - Dike near La Palma
Hv - Hidden Valley oak forest
Ja - Jamay
La - La Cañada-Hidden Valley
Jo - Jocotepec
Ld - Lerma & Duero rivers
Pe - Petatan area
Ps - Pumping Station/Santa Cruz
Pt - San Pedro Tesistan area
Pz - San Pedro Itzican area
Ra - Rosa Amarilla loop
Rc - Santa Rosa/Carnero dam
Rp - Riberas del Pilar & canyon
Sa - San Antonio/Allen Lloyd Trail
Sc - San Juan Cosala
Sn - San Nicholas/Golf Club
Tz - Tizapan canyon
Te - San Juan Tecomatlan/Mezcala
Tr - Las Trojes/oak forest
Tu - Tuxcueca/San Luis Soyatlan
Xt - Ixtlahuacan/Las Campanillas
John&Rosemary
Lake Chapala Birders is an informal group of bird observers led by John and Rosemary Keeling. Don't hesitate to contact us if you are seeking information about birding in the area. We also like to hear about sightings of birds or nests at: chapalabirders@yahoo.com or 376.766.1801. Check out the website: chapalabirders.org