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2-3 October 1998

by Steve Ganley

On October 2nd and 3rd Jay Taylor, Jay Withgott and Steve Ganley made a short trip to Puerto Penasco, Sonora, Mexico.  This location is on the Sea of Cortez about a 4-hour drive from both Phoenix and Tucson.

The weather was perfect on the 2nd and we found about 125 species for the day.  On the 3rd, a strong wind came up that was strong enough to cancel our boat trip out to the Islas San Jorge.  We repeated our efforts of the previous day, but with the wind we found only about 10 species not already seen.

The drive between the border and Puerto Penasco is about 90 km.  We made a stop in an area that has held a winter flock of Mountain Plover.  There were no Plovers found.  We were either to early or because of all of the rain the grass was to high for the birds to use.  When we arrived in town we birded the following areas: The Harbor area, Fish Market, Shrimp Pond, Sewage Ponds, Estero, Cholla Bay, Pelican Point and Sandy Beach.

The best bird of the trip was the Blackpole Warbler found at the old sewage ponds.  This may be the first record for Sonora.  Other good for the area birds were Stilt Sandpiper and a Sabine's Gull.

Here is the full trip list for birds seen in Mexico.  There were other birds found just across the border in Arizona at the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.  These included Scott's Oriole, Poorwill, Great Horned Owl and Western Tanager.

Sonoita to Puerto Penasco, Hwy 8, Sonora, Mexico   Oct. 2-3, 1998

Common Loon                            Gavia immer
Pied-billed Grebe                      Podilymbus podiceps
Eared Grebe                            Podiceps nigricollis
Black Storm-Petrel                     Oceanodroma melania
Blue-footed Booby                      Sula nebouxii
Brown Booby                            Sula leucogaster
Brown Pelican                          Pelecanus occidentalis
Double-crested Cormorant               Phalacrocorax auritus
Magnificent Frigatebird                Fregata magnificens
Great Blue Heron                       Ardea herodias
Great Egret                            Ardea alba
Snowy Egret                            Egretta thula
Reddish Egret                          Egretta rufescens
Cattle Egret                           Bubulcus ibis
Green Heron                            Butorides virescens
Black-crowned Night-Heron              Nycticorax nycticorax
Turkey Vulture                         Cathartes aura
American Wigeon                        Anas americana
Cinnamon Teal                          Anas cyanoptera
Northern Shoveler                      Anas clypeata
Northern Pintail                       Anas acuta
Green-winged Teal                      Anas crecca
Redhead                                Aythya americana
Red-breasted Merganser                 Mergus serrator
Ruddy Duck                             Oxyura jamaicensis
Osprey                                 Pandion haliaetus
Northern Harrier                       Circus cyaneus
Sharp-shinned Hawk                     Accipiter striatus
Red-tailed Hawk                        Buteo jamaicensis
Merlin                                 Falco columbarius
Gambel's Quail                         Callipepla gambelii
American Coot                          Fulica americana
Black-bellied Plover                   Pluvialis squatarola
Snowy Plover                           Charadrius alexandrinus
Wilson's Plover                        Charadrius wilsonia
Semipalmated Plover                    Charadrius semipalmatus
Killdeer                               Charadrius vociferus
American Oystercatcher                 Haematopus palliatus
Black-necked Stilt                     Himantopus mexicanus
American Avocet                        Recurvirostra americana
Greater Yellowlegs                     Tringa melanoleuca
Lesser Yellowlegs                      Tringa flavipes
Willet                                 Catoptrophorus semipalmatus
Spotted Sandpiper                      Tringa macularia
Whimbrel                               Numenius phaeopus
Long-billed Curlew                     Numenius americanus
Marbled Godwit                         Limosa fedoa
Ruddy Turnstone                        Arenaria interpres
Black Turnstone                        Arenaria melanocephala
Surfbird                               Aphriza virgata
Red Knot                               Calidris canutus
Sanderling                             Calidris alba
Western Sandpiper                      Calidris mauri
Least Sandpiper                        Calidris minutilla
Dunlin                                 Calidris alpina
Stilt Sandpiper                        Micropalama himantopus
Short-billed Dowitcher                 Limnodromus griseus
Long-billed Dowitcher                  Limnodromus scolopaceus
Wilson's Phalarope                     Steganopus tricolor
Red-necked Phalarope                   Phalaropus lobatus
Laughing Gull                          Larus atricilla
Heermann's Gull                        Larus heermanni
Ring-billed Gull                       Larus delawarensis
California Gull                        Larus californicus
Yellow-footed Gull                     Larus livens
Sabine's Gull                          Xema sabini
Caspian Tern                           Sterna caspia
Royal Tern                             Sterna maxima
Elegant Tern                           Sterna elegans
Common Tern                            Sterna hirundo
Forster's Tern                         Sterna forsteri
Least Tern                             Sterna antillarum
Black Tern                             Chlidonias niger
Rock Dove                              Columba livia
White-winged Dove                      Zenaida asiatica
Mourning Dove                          Zenaida macroura
Inca Dove                              Columbina inca
Common Ground-Dove                     Columbina passerina
Lesser Nighthawk                       Chordeiles acutipennis
Anna's Hummingbird                     Calypte anna
Belted Kingfisher                      Ceryle alcyon
Gila Woodpecker                        Melanerpes uropygialis
Western Wood-Pewee                     Contopus sordidulus
Gray Flycatcher                        Empidonax wrightii
Pacific-slope Flycatcher               Empidonax difficilis
Black Phoebe                           Sayornis nigricans
Say's Phoebe                           Sayornis saya
Vermilion Flycatcher                   Pyrocephalus rubinus
Brown-crested Flycatcher               Myiarchus tyrannulus
Western Kingbird                       Tyrannus verticalis
Loggerhead Shrike                      Lanius ludovicianus
Warbling Vireo                         Vireo gilvus
Common Raven                           Corvus corax
Horned Lark                            Eremophila alpestris
Tree Swallow                           Tachycineta bicolor
Northern Rough-winged Swallow          Stelgidopteryx serripennis
Cliff Swallow                          Petrochelidon pyrrhonota
Barn Swallow                           Hirundo rustica
Verdin                                 Auriparus flaviceps
Cactus Wren                            Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus
Rock Wren                              Salpinctes obsoletus
Bewick's Wren                          Thryomanes bewickii
House Wren                             Troglodytes aedon
Ruby-crowned Kinglet                   Regulus calendula
Black-tailed Gnatcatcher               Polioptila melanura
Northern Mockingbird                   Mimus polyglottos
Curve-billed Thrasher                  Toxostoma curvirostre
Crissal Thrasher                       Toxostoma crissale
European Starling                      Sturnus vulgaris
Phainopepla                            Phainopepla nitens
Orange-crowned Warbler                 Vermivora celata
Nashville Warbler                      Vermivora ruficapilla
Yellow Warbler                         Dendroica petechia
Yellow-rumped Warbler                  Dendroica coronata
Black-throated Gray Warbler            Dendroica nigrescens
Townsend's Warbler                     Dendroica townsendi
Blackpoll Warbler                      Dendroica striata
MacGillivray's Warbler                 Oporornis tolmiei
Common Yellowthroat                    Geothlypis trichas
Wilson's Warbler                       Wilsonia pusilla
Green-tailed Towhee                    Pipilo chlorurus
Canyon Towhee                          Pipilo fuscus
Brewer's Sparrow                       Spizella breweri
Vesper Sparrow                         Pooecetes gramineus
Black-throated Sparrow                 Amphispiza bilineata
Savannah Sparrow                       Passerculus sandwichensis
Lincoln's Sparrow                      Melospiza lincolnii
White-crowned Sparrow                  Zonotrichia leucophrys
Black-headed Grosbeak                  Pheucticus melanocephalus
Blue Grosbeak                          Guiraca caerulea
Lazuli Bunting                         Passerina amoena
Yellow-headed Blackbird                Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus
Brewer's Blackbird                     Euphagus cyanocephalus
Great-tailed Grackle                   Quiscalus mexicanus
House Finch                            Carpodacus mexicanus
House Sparrow                          Passer domesticus

Steve Ganley
Mesa, Arizona
602 830-5538