Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Birding Lake Chapala
Lake Chapala Birders March 3, 2012


More Unusual Sightings

Red-faced Warbler

Upcoming Bird Walks


Bird Walk Reports

February List

Lake Chapala Birders

Observadores de Aves del Lago de Chapala

Your hosts
John and Rosemary Keeling
John & Rosemary

If you have reports of interesting bird sightings near Lake Chapala, or need information about birding around the lake, email us at:
or phone 376-766-1801


  • More Unusual Sightings

  • In February a total of 155 species were seen around Lake Chapala. (The full list is shown below).

    Duncan Poole led a hike with John Keeling and Paul Hart above Las Trojes to explore a new route into the oak forests. In addition to finding a relatively easy hiking route we saw a Red-faced Warbler, another new species for this area. This is a higher-altitude bird that summers in northern Mexico and winters in central and southern Mexico.

    John Keeling saw a Scott's Oriole in a flowering tree harboring several species of oriole on the southern section of the Rosa Amarilla Loop. This species has not been seen here in many years. Terry Pitzner reports that a Brown Pelican has returned to the north west corner of Lake Chapala.

    Anyone iinterested in a birding hike above Las Trojes or a birding day trip to Tapalpa should see the message under Upcoming Bird Walks below.

  • Red-faced Warbler

  • r-f warbler

    Red-faced Warbler seen in the oak forest above Las Trojes in February.

  • Upcoming Bird Walks

  • Wednesday March 14, John Keeling will lead a trip to the Rosa Amarilla Loop on the south side of the lake. We will car pool at 8.00 a.m. at Donas Donuts in Ajijic. It takes an hour to get to the start of the Loop, and we will bird from 9.00 to 12.00, returning to Ajijic by 1.30. Bring snacks and drinks.

    Wednesday March 28, John Roynon will lead a bird walk at the Pumping Station starting at 8.30 a.m. This is still the best local place for birding.
    How to Get There: Drive from Chapala towards the Chapala Country Club. A mile after passing Santa Cruz on the left you will see the pumping station on the right with its three grey pump towers and a sign "Aqueducto". Take the hidden gravel road on the right immediately after the pumping station; after a mile turn left at the T junction; take the next right and park near the lake.

    Those interested in joining a birding hike into the oak forest above Las Trojes, or a day trip birding Sierra Tapalpa with lunch in Tapalpa, in mid-March, should email John at

  • Flossie's

  • Remember that one of the tourist attractions of Ajijic is Flossie's place. Take your visitors there any morning - she always has several hummingbird feeders in action. Be sure to ring the bell hard and take bags of sugar. Flossie lives on social assistance and uses over a hundred pounds of sugar per month when all her feeders are in operation. It's the blue door on the south side of 16 de Septiembre just west of Morelos.

  • Bird Walk Reports

  • February 9, nine birders joined Don Bell at El Bajio. They saw 64 species including gray silky flycatcher, tri-colored heron, northern mockingbird, American redstart, Forster's tern and Lucy's warbler.

    February 29, twelve birders joined John Roynon at the Cajititlan Marsh seeing 67 species including crested caracara, little blue heron, belted kingfisher, black-backed oriole, Wilson's snipe, roseate spoonbill and pyrrhuloxia.

    Ten birders did the four-day trip to El Tuito this year. A total of 125 speces were sighted including bumblebee and cinnamon hummingbirds, white-throated magpie jay, Harris's hawk, common black hawk, ivory-billed woodcreeper, pale-billed woodpecker and gray-crowned woodpecker.

  • February List

  • Here are the 155 species observed in February around Lake Chapala:

    Groove-billed ani
    American avocet
    American bittern (Ra)
    Red-winged blackbird
    Yellow-headed blackbird
    Indigo bunting
    Varied bunting
    Crested Caracara
    Yellow-breasted chat
    American coot
    Neotropic cormorant
    Bronzed cowbird
    Brown-headed cowbird
    Squirrel cuckoo (At)
    Inca dove
    Mourning dove
    White-tipped dove
    White-winged dove
    Long-billed dowitcher
    Mexican duck
    Ring-billed duck
    Ruddy duck
    Cattle egret
    Great egret
    Snowy egret
    Elegant Euphonia
    House finch
    Ash-throated flycatcher
    Buff-breasted flycatcher (Tr)
    Cordilleran flycatcher
    Gray silky flycatcher
    Least flycatcher
    Social flycatcher
    Vermillion flycatcher
    Common gallinule
    Blue-gray gnatcatcher
    Lesser goldfinch
    Great-tailed grackle
    Eared grebe
    Pied-billed grebe
    Black-headed grosbeak
    Blue grosbeak
    Laughing gull
    Ring-billed gull
    Northern harrier (Dm)
    Cooper's hawk
    Red-tailed hawk
    Black-crowned night heron
    Great blue heron
    Green heron
    Little blue heron
    Tricolored heron
    Berylline hummingbird
    Broad-billed hummingbird
    Rufous hummingbird
    Violet-crowned hummingbird
    White-faced ibis
    Northern jacana
    American kestrel
    Cassin's kingbird
    Thick-billed kingbird
    Tropical kingbird
    Belted kingfisher
    Ruby-crowned kinglet
    Great kiskadee
    White-tailed kite
    Eastern meadowlark (Ra)
    Merlin (Ac)
    Blue mockingbird
    Northern mockingbird
    Russet-crowned motmot
    Black-backed oriole
    Black-vented oriole
    Bullock's oriole
    Hooded oriole
    Scott's oriole (Ra)
    Streak-backed oriole
    Osprey (Ra)
    American white pelican
    Brown pelican (Sc)
    Western wood pewee
    Phainopepla (Dp)
    Black phoebe
    Say's phoebe
    Rock pigeon
    Northern pintail
    American pipit (Ch)
    Pyrrhuloxia (Cl)
    Common raven
    American redstart
    Rufous-backed robin
    Least sandpiper
    Spotted sandpiper
    White-collared seedeater
    Northern shoveler
    Loggerhead shrike
    Wilson's snipe
    Brown-back solitaire (Tr)
    Chipping sparrow
    Clay colored sparrow
    House sparrow
    Lark sparrow
    Lincoln's sparrow
    Rusty-crowned ground sparrow
    Savannah sparrow
    Stripe-headed sparrow
    Roseate spoonbill
    Black-necked stilt
    Barn swallow
    Northern rough-winged swallow
    Tree swallow
    Violet-green swallow
    Hepatic tanager
    Western tanager
    Blue-winged teal
    Cinnamon teal
    Green-winged teal
    Caspian tern
    Forster's tern
    Curve-billed thrasher
    Orange-billed nightingale thrush
    Canyon towhee
    Cassin's vireo
    Golden vireo
    Plumbeous vireo
    Warbling vireo
    Yellow-green vireo
    Black vulture
    Turkey vulture
    Black and white warbler
    Black-throated gray warbler
    Lucy's warbler
    Macgillivray's warbler
    Nashville warbler
    Orange-crowned warbler
    Rufous-capped warbler
    Red-faced warbler (Tr)
    Townsend's warbler (Tr)
    Virginia's warbler
    Wilson's warbler
    Yellow-rumped warbler
    Golden-fronted woodpecker
    Ladder-backed woodpecker
    Bewick's wren
    Canyon wren
    Happy wren (At)
    House wren
    Marsh wren
    Spotted wren
    Greater yellowlegs (Ch)
    Lesser yellowlegs
    Common yellowthroat

    Location codes:

    Ac - Ajijic: La Cristina/El Bajio
    At - Trails above Ajijic
    Av - Ajijic village
    Ch - Chapala
    Cl - Lake Cajititlan
    Cs - Santa Cruz/pumping station
    Dm - Dike near MalteraƱa
    Dp - Dike near La Palma
    Hv - Hidden Valley oak forest
    Jo - Jocotepec
    Ld - Lerma & Duero rivers
    Pe - Petatan causeway
    Po - Poncitlan
    Pt - San Pedro Tesistan
    Pz - San Pedro Itzican
    Ra - Rosa Amarilla loop
    Rc - Santa Rosa: Carnero dam
    Rp - Riberas del Pilar
    Sc - San Juan Cosala
    Sv - San Antonio/Chula Vista
    Te - San Juan Tecomatlan/Mezcala
    Tr - Las Trojes/oak forest
    Tu - Tuxcueca
    Xl - Ixtlahuacan/Las Campanillas