Slow morning at Sabino Canyon and Cedro campground, 10/28/10

The Thursday birder trip this morning went to two spots south of Tierjas in the Manzanito Mountains. Our first location was Sabino Canyon Open Space, a former fur farm purchased by the county in 1999. Many old buildings and structures remain on the property and someone with a good camera could get some great photos out here. This spot has some great pinyon juniper habitat and open grasslands, but we found very few birds. We did see a couple of Townsend’s Solitaires (Bernalillo bird #157) but mostly had views of three flavors of Dark-eyed Juncos (Oregon, Pink-sided, and Gray-headed).

In the heart of the Sabino Canyon Open Space. I saw no canyon to speak of.

Old structure in the junipers

I found this old outhouse. Many of these structures might be 70 years old, as the fur farm closed in the 1930s

A cooperative Western Scrub-Jay posed on a tree near the end of the walk.

Western Scrub-Jay

We drove up the road into Cibola National Forest to check out Cedro Campground. The campground host opened the gate for us, but we didn’t find many birds here. A fly-by Steller’s Jay was nice and a few of us tracked down a Juniper Titmouse doing its best woodpecker imitation.

On the way out, I spotted a flock of Western Bluebirds, which I now know the trick to identifying (the throat color is the key!). Not too many birds around at the end of October. Bring on the winter birds like Rosy-Finches, waterfowl, and gulls!

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