Thursday, April 7, 2016

FW: Lake Chapala Birding News

Birding News Lake Chapala
Lake Chapala Birders April 2, 2016

154 species seen in March
Black-crowned Night Heron's Nest
Upcoming Trips and Bird Walks
Bird Walk & Trip Reports
March Sightings 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 at the lake, email us at:
or phone 376-766-1801


  • 154 species seen in March

  • The complete list of sightings is shown at the end of this email.
    This is the season when the birds are looking for mates and nesting. Here are some of the interesting sightings from last month:
    - Purple Gallinules were sighted at the San Antonio malecon.
    - Also at the San Antonio malecon you can currently see the magnificent spectacle before sunset of thousands of Yellow-headed Blackbirds descending into the reed beds to roost for the night.
    - Cliff swallows are once again collecting mud for nests at the west end of the Ajijic malecon.
    - Fourteen Roseate Spoonbills were seen at the east end of the lake - the first time in more than a year.

    Global Big Day

    On Saturday, May 6, every birder is encouraged to get outside and count as many bird species as they can find in one day. These sightings should be entered in the eBird database.

    The aim is to get people out to enjoy the birds, and to get more people into using eBird. eBird is an easy-to-use database for birders world-wide to record their sightings.

  • Black-crowned Night Heron's Nest

  • Photo of a Black-crowned Night Heron's nest at the San Antonio Tlayacapan malecon taken by kayaker Wayne Renz at the beginning of March. He saw seventy of these nests in the reed beds. Previously, before the growth of the reed beds in the last two years, these birds nested in the trees nearby.

  • 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 Friday April 8, we will meet to carpool at 8.00 a.m. at Donas Donuts, leaving immediately for Lake Cajititlan (30 minutes drive). We will see a variety of marsh and lake birds. 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: indicating whether or not you will have a car.

    On Monday April 18, we will meet to carpool at Donas Donuts leaving immediately for Las Trojes (one hour away) to hike the 'horizontal oak forest trail' to the edge of the hidden valley (3-hours hiking uphill, 2-hours back). Don't expect very many birds, but the hike is very pleasant. Bring refreshments and sandwiches for lunch at noon at the top. If you plan on going, email John: indicating whether or not you will have a car.

  • Bird Walk & Trip Reports

  • On March 5, we had seven birders out at El Bajio where we saw 57 species including Thick-billed Kingbird, Blue Mockingbird, Ladder-backed Woodpecker, American Wigeon and the endemic Rufous-backed Robin.

    On March 14 at Cristiania Park there were 10 people joining in our walk. Key birds were Rose-Throated Becard, which was clearly visible for several minutes and a single Brown Pelican( a species we see occasionally on the lake). Other species were Long-billed Dowitcher, Nothern Jacana, Semi-palmated Plover, and our endemic Black-baced Oriole.

    On March 30 we had a carload of keen birders on the trip to Rancho El Venado in the Rio Verde Canyon. We observed Crested Caracara, Summer Tanager, Gila Woodpecker, a flock of Mexican Parrotlets and a pair of Pyrrhuloxia, for an exceptional total of 69 species.

  • March Sightings List

  • Here are the 154 species observed in March around Lake Chapala:

    Ani, groove-billed
    Becard, rose-throated (Tz,Ch)
    Bittern, least
    Blackbird, red-winged (Ra)
    Blackbird, yellow-headed
    Bunting, indigo
    Bunting, painted
    Bunting, varied (Tz,Av)
    Canvasback (Ra)
    Caracara, crested
    Chat, yellow-breasted
    Coot, American
    Cormorant, Neotropic
    Cowbird, bronzed
    Cowbird, brown-headed
    Creeper, brown (Sa)
    Cuckoo, squirrel (At,Sa)
    Dove, common ground
    Dove, Eurasian collared
    Dove, Inca
    Dove, white-tipped
    Dove, white-winged
    Dowitcher, long-billed
    Duck, fulvous whistling (Ch,Rp)
    Duck, Mexican
    Duck, ring-necked (Ra)
    Egret, cattle
    Egret, great
    Egret, snowy
    Euphonia, elegant (Tz,At)
    Finch, house
    Flycatcher, ash-throated
    Flycatcher, cordilleran
    Flycatcher, dusky-cappped
    Flycatcher, least
    Flycatcher, social
    Flycatcher, vermilion
    Gallinule, common
    Gallinule, purple (Sa)
    Gnatcatcher, blue-gray
    Goldfinch, lesser
    Grackle, great-tailed
    Grebe, least
    Grebe, pied-billed
    Grosbeak, black-headed
    Grosbeak, blue
    Gull, laughing
    Gull, ring-billed
    Hawk, gray (Ps)
    Hawk, red-tailed
    Heron, black-crowned night
    Heron, great blue
    Heron, green
    Heron, little blue (Rp)
    Heron, tricolored
    Hummingbird, beryline
    Hummingbird, broad-billed
    Hummingbird, rufous
    Hummingbird, violet-crowned
    Ibis, white-faced
    Jacana, northern
    Kestrel, American
    Kingbird, Cassin's
    Kingbird, thick-billed
    Kingbird, tropical
    Kingbird, western (Sa)
    Kingfisher, belted (Ch,Xt)
    Kinglet, ruby-crowned (Tz,Dp)
    Kiskadee, great
    Kite, white-tailed (Tz,Dp)
    Meadowlark, eastern (Ds,Ra)
    Mockingbird, blue
    Mockingbird, northern
    Motmot, russet-crowned (Rp)
    Nightjar, buff-collared (Av)
    Oriole, black-backed
    Oriole, black-vented
    Oriole, Bullock's
    Oriole, hooded
    Oriole, orchard
    Oriole, streak-backed
    Osprey (Ra)
    Owl, great-horned
    Parakeet, monk
    Pelican, American white
    Pelican, brown (Ch)
    Pewee, greater
    Pewee, western wood
    Phoebe, black (Tz,Ra)
    Pipit, American (Ps)
    Plover, semi-palmated
    Rail, Aztec
    Redstart, American (Av)
    Robin, rufous-backed
    Sandpiper, least
    Sandpiper, spotted
    Seedeater, white-collared
    Shoveler, northern
    Shrike, loggerhead
    Snipe, Wilson's (Ps)
    Sparrow, chipping
    Sparrow, clay-colored
    Sparrow, house
    Sparrow, lark
    Sparrow, Lincoln's
    Sparrow, rusty-crowned ground
    Sparrow, savannah (Ra)
    Sparrow, stripe-headed
    Spoonbill, roseate (Ds)
    Stilt, black-necked
    Stork, wood (Ra)
    Swallow, barn
    Swallow, cliff (Ds,Av)
    Swallow, northern rough-winged
    Swallow, tree
    Swallow, violet-green
    Tanager, summer
    Tanager, western
    Teal, blue-winged
    Teal, cinnamon
    Tern, Caspian
    Thrasher, curve-billed
    Thrush, orange-billed nightingale
    Towhee, canyon
    Vireo, Bell's
    Vireo, warbling (Av)
    Vulture, black
    Vulture, turkey
    Warbler, black and white
    Warbler, black-throated gray
    Warbler, Lucy's
    Warbler, MacGillivray's
    Warbler, Nashville
    Warbler, orange-crowned
    Warbler, rufous-capped
    Warbler, Tennessee
    Warbler, Townsend's
    Warbler, Virginia's
    Warbler, Wilson's
    Warbler, yellow (Ds)
    Warbler, yellow-rumped
    Wigeon, American
    Woodpecker, golden-fronted
    Woodpecker, ladder-backed
    Wren, Bewick's
    Wren, canyon
    Wren, house
    Wren, spotted
    Yellowlegs, lesser (Ra)
    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 MalteraƱa
    Dp - Dike near La Palma
    Hv - Hidden Valley oak forest
    Ja - Jamay
    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/Chula Vista
    Sc - San Juan Cosala
    Sn - San Nicholas/Golf Club
    Tz - Tizapan canyon
    Te - San Juan Tecomatlan/Mezcala
    Tr - Las Trojes/oak forest
    Tu - Tuxcueca/South Shore area
    Xt - Ixtlahuacan/Las Campanillas