Friday, April 16, 2010

One Last Laguna Atascosa NWR Post

Going to, finally, wind up the Texas posts.

One of the more fascinating birds I saw at Laguna Atascosa NWR was the Plain Chachalaca. They are large birds, 22 inches long. They seem equally at home on the ground and in tree tops. I saw them in fairly large numbers chattering away in the tree tops. Unfortunately, it was an overcast day when I attempted to take pictures of them there. These pictures were taken in the bird feeding area outside the Visitor Center. The nail you see in the pictures usually held an orange, but was empty when they checked out the area.

The chachalaca has a patch of bare skin on their throats which is gray to light pink. During breeding season that patch becomes bright pinkish red on the males. The red patch is evident on the bird in front.

Another neat bird was the Long-billed thrasher. They are very similar to the Brown thrashers that are common in this part of the world.

There are of course many pictures that were taken in New Mexico and Texas that I haven't posted here.

They can be found as follows:

The scenery of Bosque del Apache NWR
Sandhill Cranes at Bosque del Apache NWR
The other birds of Bosque del Apache
Scenery in Texas, January 2010
Scenery in Texas, February 2010
Birds of the Texas coast
Goose Island State Park
Aransas NWR
Padre Island National Seashore
San Bernard NWR
Laguna Atascosa NWR
Whooping Cranes


Kathiesbirds said...

I would love to see the plain chacalacas. And I can hardly believe that is a curve-billed thrasher! It looks like a brown thrasher to me. Our curve-bills are so plain and dusty brown! Glad you had a nice trip.

kayleen said...

Thanks Kathie for tactfully correcting me! You are correct, it isn't a curve-billed. It is a long-billed. Don't know why I typed curved-billed, as the photo is correctly id'ed on the photo site. I've corrected the post!

The chachalacas were fascinating to watch. I watched them in the top of the trees, feeding and chattering amongst themselves. Unfortunately, it was one of those lovely overcast days and none of the pix I took were worth anything, unless you like silhouettes.