Sunday, May 29, 2011

Gray Hawks at Buenos Aries

I can always count on some exciting encounters at Buenos Aries National Wildlife Refuge near Sasabe, Arizona which sits on the Mexican border in southern most Pima County. This visit produced Red Tailed Hawks, several Swainson's Hawks, a Black Hawk and many Turkey Vultures.

Baboquivari dominates the mountains to the west of Buenos Aries which also contain Kitt Peak, the world renowned observatory.

A couple of ducks inside an area that has been fenced off to keep bullfrogs out because they are larger than the native frogs and once introduced to an area they soon eradicate the rare leopard frogs that are native inhabitants.
The highlight of the day was a pair of nesting Gray Hawks that were forced to protect their nest from a marauding Raven while we looked on. The Raven is the larger of the two birds and it kept flying close to the nest which had young calling out in it.
The nest was placed perfectly in the tree so that it was impossible to get any more than a glimpse of it from the ground and we never saw the young birds at all.
Information on Gray Hawks can be found here:

Both the female and male Gray Hawks guarded the young when we were there and put on quite an aerial display. The Raven eventually gave up and went on it's way.

This time of year there are hundreds of vultures in the border areas sometimes they are the most common bird we see.

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