If you have reports of interesting bird sightings near Lake Chapala, or need information about birding around the lake, email us at: ChapalaBirders@yahoo.com or phone 376-766-1801
97 Species Last Month
In May a total of 97 species were seen around Lake Chapala. (The full list appears below).
The Rosa Amarilla loop is currently providing us with the most interesting birding around, particularly as we are seeing less birds on the lake now that the lake is only 50% full, instead of the "lake management target" of 80% full.
Nothern Saw-whet Owl
Northern Saw-whet Owl Observed in Ajijic in May.
Another New Species for the Area
Early in May, Libby Townsend's gardener located the owl that was calling (annoyingly) every night in the manner of a burglar alarm in Ajijic. It turned out to be a Northern Saw-whet Owl, not previously reported in this area. John Keeling also heard the call above the village, without knowing what it was! This owl is 7 inches high and only calls in the breeding season in April and May. Trivia item: the name was given some 150 years ago when country people sharpened their own saws. The sharpening process included "Hammering, Sharpening, Setting & Whetting". One of this owl's calls is like the sound of whetting a saw - with a whet-stone of course.
Upcoming Bird Walks & Trips
On Thursday June 7, 5.00 pm Motmots in Chula Vista, Paseo de Golf #17. Margot and Bohdan Wojciechowski have kindly consented to open their house for us to view the rufous-crowned motmots which are breeding there. To Get There: From the carretera turn into Upper Chula Vista on Paseo de Golf. Proceed uphill, watching the numbers on the left. No. 17 is on a small side street. Park on Paseo de Golf and walk to the house. The side street is too narrow for parking.
On Monday June 18, 8.00 am. Cristianía Park in Chapala. We will see common birds in the park and shore birds on the lake-front. At 10.00 we will go for breakfast to Las Delicias Restaurant for breakfast and prepare the bird list. To Get There: From Ajijic proceed straight across the traffic light on the main avenue (Madero); go five more blocks; turn left at the T-junction and park on the right, close to the park entrance.
In the Week of June 11, we are planning a day trip to a new location in the Rio Verde Canyon, one hour north-east of Chapala. Last time we identified 3 species not seen at Lake Chapala. If you are interested in joining us, email John Keeling.
Bird Walk and Trip Reports
May 10, we had five people on the Rosa Amarilla bird trip including two relative beginners who we were able to impress with the marvelous range of local birds, including Western Bluebird, Eastern Meadowlark, White-tailed Hawk with nesting material, Wilson's Phalaropes on migration, and two dozen Wood Storks.
May 21, we had 11 visitors at Flossie's including some who dropped in because the gate was open! Sightings included four species of Hummingbird: Berylline, Violet-crowned, Broad-billed, and Sparkling-tailed. Our thanks to Flossie for hosting this and setting out extra chairs for the group.
May 17, a small group of us went to the Sierra de Tapalpa, one hour south-east of the lake, where we managed to add six species to the Tapalpa list, specifically: Yellow-eyed Junco, Arizona Woodpecker, American Robin, Savannah Sparrow, Yellow-headed Blackbird and Bronzed Cowbird.
Here are the 97 species observed in May around Lake Chapala:
Ani, groove-billed Blackbird, red-winged (Ra) Blackbird, yellow-headed Bluebird, western (Ra) Bobwhite, northern (Ra) Bunting, indigo Caracara, crested Coot, American Cormorant, neotropic Cowbird, bronzed Cuckoo, squirrel (Cs) Dove, common ground Dove, Inca Dove, white-tipped Dove, white-winged Duck, fulvous whistling (Ca) Duck, Mexican Duck, ruddy Egret, cattle Egret, great Egret, snowy Finch, house Flycatcher, ash-throated Flycatcher, cordilleran Flycatcher, gray silky Flycatcher, Nutting's (Ac) Flycatcher, social Flycatcher, vermilion Gallinule, common Goldfinch, lesser Grackle, great-tailed Grebe, pied-billed Grosbeak, blue Gull, laughing Gull, ring-billed Hawk, red-tailed Hawk, white-tailed (Ra) Heron, black-crowned night Heron, great blue Heron, green Heron, tri-colored Hummingbird, berylline Hummingbird, broad-billed Hummingbird, sparkling tailed (Ac) Hummingbird, violet-crowned Ibis, white-faced Jacana, northern Killdeer Kingbird, Cassin's Kingbird, thick-billed Kingbird, tropical Kiskadee, great Meadowlark, eastern (Ra Ch) Mockingbird, blue Mockingbird, northern (Ra Cs) Motmot, russet-crowned Nightjar, buff-collared Oriole, black-backed Oriole, black-vented Oriole, streak-backed Owl, great horned Owl, northern saw-whet (Ac) Pewee, western wood Phalarope, Wilson's (Ra) Phoebe, black Pigeon, rock Raven, common Robin, rufous-backed Sandpiper, spotted Seedeater, white-collared Shoveler, northern Shrike, loggerhead Sparrow, house Sparrow, lark Sparrow, rusty-crowned ground Sparrow, stripe-headed Stilt, black-necked Stork, wood (Ra) Swallow, barn Swallow, northern rough-winged Tanager, western Teal, blue-winged Teal, cinnamon Thrasher, curve-billed Thrush, orange-billed nightingale Towhee, canyon Vulture, black Vulture, turkey Warbler, rufous-capped Warbler, yellow Warbler, yellow-rumped Woodpecker, golden-fronted Woodpecker, ladder-backed Wren, Bewick's Wren, canyon Wren, happy Wren, spotted
Ac - Ajijic: La Cristina/El Bajio At - Trails above Ajijic Av - Ajijic village Ca - Lake Cajititlan Ch - Chapala Cs - Santa Cruz/pumping station Dm - Dike near Malteraña 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 & canyon Sa - San Antonio/Chula Vista Sc - San Juan Cosala Tz - Tizapan canyon Te - San Juan Tecomatlan/Mezcala Tr - Las Trojes/oak forest Tu - Tuxcueca canyon Xt - Ixtlahuacan/Las Campanillas