Date: 11/24/19 1:04 pm From: <dpsiminski...> Subject: [AZNMbirds] Sierra Vista EOP Birding Walk
This morning, eleven birders, mostly locals and a couple from Ontario, walked
the dikes of the Sierra Vista Environmental Operations Park (EOP). We saw 65
species of birds.
The highlight of the day was the day itself and the camaraderie of fellow
birders. The morning was cool, 40 – 55°F, calm to light air with light cirrus
clouds giving way to a cerulean Arizona sky. Perfect!
The avian species highlights were a chestnut-collared larkspur flying and
landing and again flying and landing with horned larks, and a single great
egret flying over the cattail ponds. Both these species are not commonly found
at the EOP.
Our avian experience highlight was a huge mixed flock of ducks flying from the
recharge ponds in perfect light at close range with an already well-fed
peregrine in lackadaisical pursuit. The peregrine was first seen at 8:15 a.m.
perched on a utility pole with a crop bulging with fresh duck meat. It sat on
the post digesting its meal for three hours before it couldn’t resist the
sight of flocks of duck in the air and gave a half-hearted pursuit over our
heads before it returned to it digesting perch.
Birding walks behind the locked gates of the Sierra Vista EOP occur every
Sunday morning. Meet at the EOP Bird Viewing Platform before 8:00 a.m. to sign
in with the guide. Late arrivals will not have access behind the locked gates.
The EOP is located just east (~ 3 miles) of Sierra Vista on SR 90. Look for
the Brua Animal Care Center and the Wildlife Viewing signs on the northside of
SR 90. Turn left (north) and proceed to the bird viewing platform.