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Part 1

July 1998

Cumbres de Monterrey National Park is stilla paper park although we are working on making it a reality!!  It would shrink to 145,000 has but these would be truly protected and not like now with 256,000 including most of Monterrey City itself!!

On the outskirts of the city are two parks which are definite excellent birding spots: One is Chpinque Park in the suburbs of "Colonia del Valle" or San Pedro.  If you follow signs to "Centro Cultural Alfa (Planetario)" and then follow signs to Chipinque it is easy to get there.  There was an unfortunate fire which claimed about 30% of the PArk but it is now mostly resprouting.  Birds here are your usual pine-oak species but some of them might be og interest like the Elegant Trogon, Gray Collared Becard.  If is generally full of people on weekends but you can take some trails as most people just go there to picnic.

Now Parque la Estanzuela is a tiny park but a real treat below in my description from a couple months ago:

Just to use the opportunity to expand a little on the information Andres Sada just sent you about Parque Natural La Estanzuela near Monterrey.  Here are some species I remember sighting there in the last few months on four separate visits and that I consider are likely year-round residents in the area.  So as Andres states......this might be a good place to go on your next visit to Monterrey.

Blue-crowned Motmot
Rufous-capped Brush-Finch
Brown Jay
Olive Sparrow
Rufous-crowned Sparrow
Long-billed Thrasher
Gray-collared Becard
Band-tailed Pigeon
Elegant Trogon
Phainopepla (migrant but interesting  in this habitat!!)
Crescent Chested Warbler
Tropical Parula
Altamira Oriole
White-collared Seedeater

Just at the entrance and to the left where the WCs are, there is a clump of different "exotic" plants, trees and bushes that are also liked by several of these species.  Especially the edge ones.  Weekdays are best because there will be just as many (or more) birds and little human traffic.

Regarding the Maroon-fronted Parrot this is a good time of the year to see them.  Mostly what you will see are tiny speck in the sky overwhemingly in pairs and usually forming V's.  They are hard to spot at first but once you see them easy to follow.  To get a closer and less chancy look I recommend you go to the area called "Condominios" or Highrise" near the settlement of Laguna de Sanchez within Cumbres National PArk and beyond Cola de Caballo Park and El Manzano-Vitro Park.  If you visit La Estanzuela this would be continuing south on the highway towards Linares or Ciudad Victoria.  The entrance to Cola de Caballo is marked and is at the town of El CErcado.  We have been working on the species for some years now and may eventually hold visits to yet another site at EL Taray Sanctuary but for now it is closed to visits until the impact of human presence on breeding activity is determined.

Finally Re.  Worthens Sparrow.  I am not the one to ask but I hear that over half of the people looking for it at Tanque de Emergencia have succeeded in the last copuple years.  While in the vicinity of Saltillo I recommend you visit the bird museum in Saltillo.  It contains about 700 species, all Mexican, they are stuffed but it is beautifully done and can help you later with field ID.  You can also ask for Aldegundo Garza the Museum President or one of his assistants and they will for sure know where to find Worthens.

Ernesto C.  Enkerlin-Hoeflich

Dirección/Mailing address        Otros datos/other data
Centro de Calidad Ambiental        Profesor  Asociado, Depto. de Recursos Naturales
Tecnológico de Monterrey         Investigador, Centro de Calidad Ambiental
Garza Sada #2501 Sur       Director, Pronatura Noreste
Monterrey, N.L. 64849      Programa México, Wildlife Preservation Trust Intl.
MEXICO                          e-mail:
                           Telefonos: 011-52(8)328-4032 o 328-4449
                           FAX: 011-52(8) 359-6280 y (8)349-1994


Part 2:

July 1998

It is of great pleasure your interest and your trip to Monterrey area for birding.  Beside the information Ernesto C.  Enkerlin, I will like to offer you a book of the birds of Nuevo Leon, called " Las Aves de Nuevo Leon ", and a book of the birds in the National Park Chipinque, " Las Aves de Chipinque" , as well as a Check List of the 200 spices of the region that are more often seen.

Please advise your trip program to see if I send the books to Austin or I deliver them to you in Monterrey.  I offer you all the help you need for your trip as well to go with you birding to some of the places.  I coment you that I am a Rookie in birding, but I know the Monterrey area very well.

From Austin to Monterrey all the way is High Way and on the Mexican part it is a Toll Way that cost around 12 USD.  and it takes about 7 hours to get to Monterrey.

Ing. Ricardo Guerra de la Garza
Tel. : (8) - 338 - 6080
Fax : (8) - 338 - 6378
e-mail :
Monterrey N.L. Mexico


Part 3:

July 1998

Regarding MF parrot: Before you get to Laguna de Sanchez, you will pass through a village called San Isidro.  There you can make a right turn onto a paved road.  There are very few, if any, other paved roads which connect to the main road once you have gone more than 10 or 15 miles past Cola de Caballo.  The road is paved for only 2 or 3 miles.  Soon after the pavement ends, if not before, you will see a mountain with a high cliff wall on your left.  MF parrots were moving about the bottom of that cliff when I visited there last Easter.  I tried climbing up to the cliff but the route I took got too steep and too dense with brush.  I ran out of time and could explore no more.  My closest looks were 150 to 200 yards as they flew around.

You can continue on this road to get to Saltillo but I do not recommend it.  The unpaved stretch (maybe 30 miles) is too dusty.  The route is supposed to be more scenic and is supposed to save you an hour if you go from there rather than going back to Monterrey and then via the road that goes by Chipinque.

La Estanzuela was extremely crowded that Easter weekend.  Maybe non-holiday weekends are not as crowded.  It was good anyway.

The way to Tanque de Emergencia: As you leave Saltillo going south on Highway 54, you pass a Pemex station.  By 22 or 23 miles past that station you should have a flat expanse on your left.  There will be a tiny settlement on your left close to the road.  In the distance to the left you may be able to see the small village of Tanque de Emergencia.  At around 24 miles past the station there will be a small sign on the left that says DOS HERMANOS (if I remember correctly).  Take that road to Tanque de Emergencia.  Go straight past the village.  About 3 miles from the highway the road goes through an opening at a fence (it probably has a cattle guard).  The road will now go parallel to a fence on your left.  Another half mile or so will bring you to broken cement water tank on your left.  On your right will be an extensive prairie dog town.  Around this area is where others have reported Worthen's Sparrow.  In Easter I saw two birds (and got a quick look at only one of them) a short distance before the fenced area.  Be aware that some Worthen's Sparrows can have pink legs.  See the archives for a bit of discussion on the subject.

Good luck.

Si alquien desea esta información en español, se la daré con mucho gusto.

Jose Hernandez
Houston, TX