About Me

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Sandia Park, New Mexico, United States
I have been birding for 41 years. My favorite clients are those who are interested in birds, watching them and even learning about their behavior, not just checking birds off a life list. I enjoy people and want to have fun while birding. As a bird watcher since 1972, I have acquired a broad knowledge of birds, birdsong, habitat and behavior. One of the things I enjoy most about taking people out birding is teaching my clients how to identify birds and how to recall their song. We were in Asheville, NC for 5 years, and Bisbee, AZ 10 years before that. Currently we are house hunting in New Mexico.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Summertime 2012

My wife Lisa and I are still in a temporary location and closer to getting to the west. Some upcoming trips I am leading this summer include:
I will be in Southeast Arizona beginning mid June for a private tour. Then, I will be available on and off from late June through late August.
I am booking up fast for the summer so please call or email me. 

Now some juicy details about the High Lonesome Prairie Chicken Trip:
This trip was one of the most pleasant trips we have had in Colorado due to the sunny, mild weather perfect for chicken searching. 
We had a very cohesive group who all got along sharing information and stories while being driven throughout the state.
The trip began in southeast Colorado with reasonably close views of Lesser Prairie Chickens on the lek. This species have disappeared just south of the location due to a hale storm in 2006 that decimated that population along the Kansas border and Colorado.
We then continued to the northeast part of the state in search of Greater Prairie Chickens.
We enjoyed the courtship display of Horned Larks, and Western Meadowlarks outside of the vehicle as we waited to see the dance of the Greater Prairie Chickens. The dance was spectacular, as always. 
Westward bound, we found the Gunnison Sage Grouse, the last remaining two hundred pair of this bird left in the world. We were held back 200 yards to avoid any human disturbance to the birds. Fortunately, we saw upwards of 30 birds. We heard that days before Golden Eagles were predating the birds left and right in front of birding groups! 
11,998 feet high was our next destination: Loveland Pass, in search of the White tailed Ptarmigan. We failed in finding the bird due to early nesting in a milder than usual season.
We were able to encounter two usually difficult species, based on past experiences. We strategized and chose to seek out the Dusky Grouse before sunrise. Just pre dawn we witnessed a Short eared Owl flying over the road about 30 yards in front of us. And alas, we found a Dusky Grouse standing 10 feet from the car for everyone's viewing pleasure. About a quarter mile away we encountered the Sharp tailed Grouse dancing above the grasses with pretty good views. 
Overall, the trip was successful and fun. I highly recommend novice - serious photographers to sign up for this one, in addition to birders, of course!
Prairie Chicken Tour


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