Friday, March 29, 2013


On a recent visit to family in the Phoenix area, I had the pleasure of birding the Tres Rios Wetlands. (above photo)  Much of the water in the wetlands is treated waste water that flows out of the Phoenix treatment plant into a large pond system, creeks, and man made water ways that meander through the desert, eventually terminating into wetlands.  In a few hours of birding I saw 48 species; not bad, considering most of the migratory birds had moved on.

In the vast pond system, which is fenced off from the public, saw numerous Green Herons.  From my experience, a birder is fortunate to see just one of these little beauties.  And to see one sitting on bobbed wire is a most unusual sight.   Close to the ponds was a Great Blue Heron Rookery in an old Cottonwood tree.  Create a habitat and the birds will find it, and they will breed.
 Birds of feather, do flock together --- In an area of trees and reeds were hundreds of boisterous Great-tailed Grackles; many of the males were in breeding poses with their head point skyward.  Another section of reeds was occupied by thousands of noisy Yellow-headed Blackbirds; and on an island in one of the larger ponds were 50 or so White Pelicans.  I have a video on the wetlands (about 1.40 seconds). 

This was my second visit to Tres Rios and I was not disappointed.


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