Sunday, July 17, 2016

And just when I thought I had been everywhere!

In the last few years, Jeanne and I have covered a lot of miles in and around La Paz, and the Baja California Sur in general. We have picked locals brains about hot spots to go, and discovered a few on our on. Last week, a friend mentioned that he had gone a hike and was amazed at the number of birds in that area. Well, as you can imagine, that got my attention. Just a little over 5 miles outside of town, down a poorly marked dirt road, you come to a locked gate. Go thru the side of the gate(it's OK he says, it just there to keep the kids from partying in there) and down a dirt road, you will come to a large body of water out in the middle of the desert. Water!! In the Desert? and fresh water to boot? This I gotta see, so first thing Saturday morning, I loaded up all my goodies and head out. Found the road, drove down to the gate, and walked down the hill. As you can see below, it is beautiful!  There is a damn that forms the reservoir. And, yes, there were birds everywhere! All told, in three hours I saw 25 different bird species.

Here is the damn that forms this beautiful body of water. At this point I an pretty sure it is used for irrigation, but until I do some more research, I won't know for sure.

This Black-throated Sparrow greeted me as soon as I opened my car door, and then waited around so I could get the camera out and set up....a real ham!

In all this time traveling these desert road, I keep hoping for that "One" really awesome photo of a Greater Roadrunner, I have hundreds, but not the "One",  this one is pretty close. I was just sitting near the water when it popped up un this cactus and preened.

In that same area, there were several Northern Cardinals, first is the male, who seemed to be a bit shyer, staying up on the cactus that was just left of the Roadrunner,

And the female,  who came right down to see me.

These tiny little Blue-gray Gnatcatchers are such a challenge top photograph, as they just never sit still, this one stopped for just a moment, I am sure to sit in the shade of a bit.

I was able to see a really large number of hummingbirds, and nearly all were our only endemic hummingbird, the Xanthus's. It seemed to me that the males were all very leery of getting any where near me, but the females had no problem, in fact several times getting well inside the minimum focal point of my lens. Below are two of the images of female Xanthus's Hummingbirds.

This is a shot of the reservoir from closer to the damn, as the water turns and bends up several little arms, formed by the canyon that the was used to form the reservoir. This is a place that I will be visiting a lot.....


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