Date: 1/5/18 10:59 pm
From: Andrew Core <tucsonrba...>
Subject: [AZNMbirds] RBA Tucson, AZ - 5 January 2018
Hello Birders,

This update of Tucson Audubon Society's Rare Bird Alert for Southeast
Arizona was made on January 5, 2018; the next update will be made on
January 12. Phone your reports to 520-629-0510 X 3, or email to
rarebirdalert AT

SEVERAL IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS follow the sightings, including information
on temporary closures and rules for access to other important birding
areas. Abbreviation "m.ob." = multiple observers. An asterisk (*)
preceding a species name in the list indicates that it merits careful, full
documentation. A pound sign (#) indicates that brief corroborating details
are warranted. Documentation and photos of review species may be submitted

Where directions are not given, they can be found in the most recent
edition of Tucson Audubon's "Finding Birds in Southeast Arizona". More
information including updates may be found here:
For additional sightings in the region, please see the The Arizona-New
Mexico Birding ListServ (

For more information about Tucson Audubon field trips, lectures and
educational opportunities, please see

#Eurasian Wigeon
#Greater Scaup
#Green Kingfisher
#Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
#Red-breasted Sapsucker
#Eastern Phoebe
#Winter Wren
#Pacific Wren
#Black-capped Gnatcatcher
#Rufous-backed Robin
#Varied Thrush
#Gray Catbird
#Brown Thrasher
#Louisiana Waterthrush
#Clay-colored Sparrow
#"Red" Fox Sparrow
#McCown's Longspur
#Lapland Longspur
#Baltimore Oriole

Red-breasted Nuthatches and Red Crossbills continue to invade southeast
Arizona – a recording is critical in separating the different types of
crossbills: see

TUBAC area (annotated map:
A *SINALOA WREN was photographed on 1/1 (Bill Lisowsky, Steven Bonta) and
continued on 1/5 (Antony Shrimpton). It was originally spotted along the De
Anza Trail about 200 yards south of the crossing, but on 1/5 was seen near
the old cars a little further south. It has been seen on both side of the
river. Multiple #RUFOUS-BACKED ROBINS continued along Santa Gertrudis Lane
on this week (m.ob.) across from #12. Remember to park along the frontage
road and walk in.
In Montosa Canyon (annotated map: a #BLACK-CAPPED
GNATCATCHER continued this week on 12/31 (Ron Friesz) near the culvert,
upstream of the concrete stream crossing.

In Florida Canyon (annotated map:, *RUFOUS-CAPPED
WARBLERS continued this week (m.ob.) in the West Fork near the dam.
Directions: About 400 yards from parking lot is a metal gate, and just past
the gate the canyon forks. The main trail follows the East Fork, but most
sightings have been in the West Fork to the right. About 125 yards up the
rough trail in the West Fork is a large water tank and a low dam. The oak
grove is about 1/3 mile past the dam. Note: The trail for the West Fork can
be difficult to find, and is steep and rough in places. If you see the sign
with distances to Florida Saddle, Madera Canyon, etc you've missed the
turn. It is not necessary, recommended or permissible to enter the research
station to see these birds. #BLACK-CAPPED GNATCATCHERS continued in Florida
Canyon this week (m.ob.); they've been seen near the Florida Canyon parking
area and a short distance up the trail, and at the old corral at FR488 &
continued along Proctor Rd this week (m.ob.).

A #EURASIAN WIGEON continued at the Avra Valley WWTP on 1/5 (m.ob.);
however, a likely Eurasian x American Wigeon hybrid is also present, so
caution is warranted. The second bird has paler cheeks and a bit of black
at the base of the bill. If the gate is locked, try the call box; gate is
locked for the day at 2pm.
A #GREATER SCAUP was reported at Kennedy Lake this week (m.ob.). Several
Lesser Scaup are present as well.
A #BROWN THRASHER continued on 1/5 (Joe Aliperti) from private property
along Sabino Creek just outside the Sabino Canyon park boundary.
A #GRAY CATBIRD continued in a neighborhood in northeast Tucson on 1/5
(Keith Kamper).
At Sweetwater Wetlands the #BALTIMORE ORIOLE continued this week (m.ob.). A
#CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was reported on 1/2 (Mark Stevenson, Molly Pollock).
A #RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER was photographed on 1/1 (Keith Kamper) at the
Miller Creek Trail in Happy Valley east of the Rincon Mountains.
A #PACIFIC WREN was reported again in Marshall Gulch on Mt Lemmon on 1/4
(Brian Nicholas). A #VARIED THRUSH continued at Mud Spring on the Upper
Palisades Trail (#99) on 1/3 (Brian Nicholas).
A #WINTER WREN was reported at Cienega Creek Preserve (permit required) on
12/31 (Paul Suchanek, Brian Nicholas) near the Colossal Cave Rd bridge over
the Pantano Wash in southeast Tucson. NOTE: This area is accessible from
Colossal Cave Rd or the Gabe Zimmerman Davidson Canyon Trailhead. A special
advance permit is required to visit this preserve; see: and annotated

A #EURASIAN WIGEON continued at Lake Cochise by the Twin Lakes Golf Course
in Willcox on 1/5 (m.ob.).

At Patagonia Lake (annotated map:, a #GREATER SCAUP
continued this week (m.ob.). #BLACK-CAPPED GNATCATCHERS continued this week
(m.ob.) at the east end along the Birding Trail.
A putative #RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER continued along Blue Haven Rd this week
(m.ob.) between the Paton Center for Hummingbirds and the Patagonia-
Sonoita Creek Preserve, though there was some debate over whether it was a
hybrid – photos of the chest would help. Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve
annotated map:

A #GREATER SCAUP was photographed at the Mammoth WTP on 1/1 (Ed Dunn).

A #YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER continued at Roper Lake SP on 12/30 (Jeff
Coker, Diane Drobka).
Two #WINTER WRENS were reported from the Cluff Pond #3 nature trail at
Cluff Ranch WMA on 1/3 (Jeff Coker, Diane Drobka), about 200 yards from the
parking area. One was where the nature trail first comes near the inlet
stream and the other farther south along the nature trail and stream, about
30 meters downstream from the inlet pipe.

A #YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER and a #PACIFIC WREN were reported on the
Dudleyville CBC on 1/1 (m.ob.).

At the San Pedro House, two #LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSHES continued this week
(m.ob.), one has been seen near marker #7 south of the bridge and one north
of the bridge. A #GREEN KINGFISHER continued near the bridge (m.ob.).
An #EASTERN PHOEBE continued and a #WINTER WREN was reported along the San
Pedro north of the Hereford Bridge on 1/5 (David Wood).
In Huachuca Canyon, a #PACIFIC WREN was reported again about 100 yards past
the 1.7-mile parking area on 1/2 (Dave Stejskal, Andrew Core) and continued
on 1/3 (Ron Beck).
A #RUFOUS-BACKED ROBIN was reported at Ash Canyon B&B on 1/4 (Marky

PORTAL & the CHIRICAHUAS (annotated map:
A #"RED" FOX SPARROW continued in Whitetail Canyon on 1/1 (Rick Taylor).
on the Portal CBC on 12/30 (fide Lori Conrad).

A #LAPLAND LONGSPUR and a #MCCOWN'S LONGSPUR were reported from the Davis
Pasture section of Las Cienegas NCA on 1/5 (Richard Fray).
A #MCCOWN’S LONGSPUR was reported along Curly Horse Ranch Rd on 1/4 (Marky

A Brown Pelican continued at the Amado STP this week (m.ob.).

The revised 8th edition of Tucson Audubon's "Finding Birds in Southeast
Arizona" is available here:

TUCSON - Mosquito control operations are scheduled at Sweetwater Wetlands
from 6:30-8:30am on Mondays during the warmer months (usually March -
November). The gate will open when operations are finished. Due to
long-term construction, Roger Road WRF is closed. See our Sweetwater page (
or for details.

The Pima County Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department security
procedures are subject to change any time. Please see the "bird watching"
link on this page for important information regarding access:

the southwest corner or along the south edge near the berm. Annotated map:

RAMSEY CANYON - Ramsey Canyon Preserve is closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

ASH CANYON B&B: open dawn to dusk EXCEPT Wednesday, when open noon to dusk.
Parking is limited; please carpool whenever possible. No need to call ahead.

FORT HUACHUCA - access requirements are posted on its official webpage at The Visitor
Control Center is located at the Van Deman Gate on Hwy 90. The fort is an
active military installation and will suspend your driving privileges on
Post for 30 days on your first offense for talking or using a cell phone
while driving. You MUST use a hands free device. Current entry requirements
(subject to change without notice): US citizens must pass a background
check and should be prepared to show photo ID for everyone in the vehicle
at the entrance, and possibly your vehicle registration and insurance as
well. Foreign nationals must be accompanied by an approved military escort;
contact the base (520.533.7111), or possibly the Sierra Vista Visitor's
Bureau (520.417.6960) well in advance. ACCESS NOTE: apparently some states
driver's licenses do not meet federal requirements for base entry (KY, ME,
MT, PA, SC, MN, MO, and WA); see or for details.

SANTA CRUZ FLATS: Management at the Evergreen Turf Sod Farm has asked
birders not to drive into the property (i.e., the 2750 road); birding from
perimeter roads (i.e., Tweedy or Pretzer) is still fine.

AVRA VALLEY WRF: Gates open 7AM and close PROMPTLY at 2PM (do not linger,
you will be locked inside).

GREEN VALLEY WRF: under construction, access uncertain. When open, use the
call box at the gate, sign in and out at the office, and stay away from
buildings and construction equipment.




Good birding!

Andrew Core
SEAZ RBA Compiler - Tucson, AZ

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