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The Spoonbill, Vol. 38, No. 11, November 1989
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The Spoonbill, Vol. 38, No. 11, November 1989 - Image 3. November 1989. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. September 26, 2021. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/2007_023/item/1045/show/1037.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(November 1989). The Spoonbill, Vol. 38, No. 11, November 1989 - Image 3. Outdoor Nature Club Newsletters. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/2007_023/item/1045/show/1037

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

The Spoonbill, Vol. 38, No. 11, November 1989 - Image 3, November 1989, Outdoor Nature Club Newsletters, Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries, accessed September 26, 2021, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/2007_023/item/1045/show/1037.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title The Spoonbill, Vol. 38, No. 11, November 1989
Alternative Title The Spoonbill, Vol. XXXVIII, No. 11, November 1989
Contributor (Local)
  • Price, Libby
Publisher Outdoor Nature Club
Date November 1989
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Ornithology
Subject.Geographic (TGN)
  • Houston, Texas
Genre (AAT)
  • newsletters
  • periodicals
Language English
Type (DCMI)
  • Text
Original Item Location ID 2007-023, Box 12, Folder 5
ArchivesSpace URI /repositories/2/archival_objects/9874
Original Collection Outdoor Nature Club Records
Digital Collection Outdoor Nature Club Newsletters
Digital Collection URL http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/2007_023
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Repository URL http://libraries.uh.edu/branches/special-collections/
Use and Reproduction In Copyright
File Name index.cpd
Item Description
Title Image 3
Format (IMT)
  • image/jpeg
File Name uhlib_2007_023_b012_f005_010_003.jpg
Transcript BUSCAMOS MUCHAS CLASSES DE AVES The El Naranjo & Rio Corona CBC's by Robert P. Thacker Closer, closer, and even closer we approached the Aplomado Falcon. We could not believe how unconcerned he was with our presence. We approached with scope and binoculars a few feet at a time, with each stop admiring the falcon through the scope. Taking care to move slowly and quietly, we got close enough to fill the field of view of the scope with only the Aplomado's head. Our excitement and exclamations had to be whispered so as not to disturb the bird. Finally, the falcon flew across a field of young cane sprouts to perch by yet another Aplomado! We were incredulous. Here was a hunting pair of Aplomados! The smaller male, which we had closely observed, and the larger female perched far off across the field, had been hunting the large field together. Suddenly both birds flew from their perch, crossed the field and dived after Common Ground Doves. Having missed, the male went back to his perch by us and the female back across the field. Then, again, both birds flew after the Ground Doves and missed again as the doves flew into a tall cane patch. We found these Aplomados in the El Estribo area of the El Naranjo Christmas count circle which is in eastern San Luis Potosi, Mexico near the Tamaulipas border. What a thrill it was to observe these two Aplomados, which are rare and local even in northeastern Mexico! We had come to Mexico to participate in the El Naranjo and Rio Corona Christmas Bird Counts. I had birded El Naranjo in 1983 and wanted to do both counts in 1984. Thus, I was thrilled when Bob Behrstock, veteran tour leader from Houston and Gloria Saylor of Port Lavaca decided to accompany me to do both counts. We left Houston the Thursday after Christmas, 1984, for the Valley. We had been hoping that the Fork-tailed Flycatcher would stay long enough for us to get a look at it. The bird tape said it had been seen the day before, so we headed over towards Rio Hondo to try for it. Arriving at the designated spot, it was interesting to see several cars there and numerous birders tromping around. This bird was clearly a star attraction bringing in birders from around the country. We checked out the area and found nothing. The high wind was discouraging. Then, as we were talking, the flycatcher appeared out of nowhere and flew over our heads to perch in a small shrub by a pond. Quickly everyone was alerted that the bird had been found. Cameras clicked, people shouted with glee, and everyone congratulated each other upon seeing this rare bird. I thought to myself that no matter what might happen in Mexico the trip was worthwhile just to have seen the Fork-tailed Flycatcher. Early the next morning we crossed the border from Brownsville to Matamoros and headed south to the Rio Corona. We were to meet Gene Blacklock, Environmental Education Coordinator for the Welder Wildlife Refuge and Rio Corona. count compiler, at the river. The Rio Corona is a cypress-lined river north of Ciudad "Victoria which many authors have dubbed the most_ northern extension of the new world tropics. Indeed there are tropical birds at the Corona. The drive from Matamoros south is rather uninteresting birdwise until one reaches San Fernando, where hills and cacti and a more arid landscape emerge. Even then there is not much until you come to the Corona, leave the road behind, and drive within its sheltered cypress-lined banks. There it is possible to see such tropical birds as Elegant (Coppery-tailed) Trogon and Blue-crowned Motmot. We found a beautiful male Rose-throated Becard with its rose throat contrasting with an overall grayish color. The female Becard is brownish all over, looking nothing like her mate except in profile. A male Blue Bunting darted through the thickets. Altamira Orioles preened in the sunlight with an orange glow. We spotted a large green Amazon Kingfisher along with Green, Belted and Ringed kingfishers. Three large Muscovy Ducks perched in a tree near the river. At dusk, as we were eating dinner at our campsite, a Crane Hawk was spotted hanging upside down from a tree limb. Needless to say, we all dropped our food to view this bird which Gene said had never been observed in the count circle. The Crane Hawk was interesting with its long red legs, accipiter shape and strange upside down behavior. But the real show at the Corona was the Mottled (Wood) Owls. At dark Bob hooted some up with recordings of their calls on a tape recorder, and we observed one in the light of a Q-beam. These "earless" owls with deep dark brown eyes were quite remarkable. Their calls were harsh and mournful with an almost human quality. After the Rio Corona we birded with Gene up into the Sierra Madres west of Ciudad Victoria. The road is steep and winding up to the summit of several thousand feet. We stopped near the summit to bird the humid oak forest. After some patience we found the "feeding flock" which included species that can be found in the southwestern U.S. such as Bridled Titmouse, Black-throated Gray Warbler, Hutton's Vireo, Hepatic Tanager, Painted Redstart, Gray-breasted Jay, Acorn Woodpecker and Greater Pewee. Once one reaches the summit of the Sierra Madre at the zone of oak trees and descends onto the central plateau, -such birds can be found. This is explained by the fact that the mountain oak forest ecology is somewhat similar to the Pine Oak Biome of Southeastern Arizona or Boot Canyon in Big Bend. Indeed, these areas are extensions of the Sierra Madres. The Mexican birds in the mountain oaks included an Audubon's Oriole perched in an agave stalk and a Rufous-capped and a Crescent- chested Warbler foraging with the flock. . From Ciudad Victoria we headed south to meet Gene and his group at the Rio Sabinas. Leaving Victoria one drives over a large mesa where a globe- shaped monument marks the fact that you are crossing the Tropic of Cancer. Then you descend into the valley of the Rio Sabinas where you truly are in the tropics. Upon reaching the Sabinas you have left our Nearctic zoogeographic region and entered the Neotropical zoographic region, and once there you know why you drove all the way from Houston. Parrots and parakeets are quite numerous. Red-lored Parrots flew across the evening sky calling their "z-crack, z-crack" calls. A large flock of Green Parakeets moved across the river to roost. (continued next page)