Animals in Arizona

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My first western kingbird.

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Two juvenile kingbirds. The parent was close by in the next tree.

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A zone tailed hawk being chased by a cooper’s hawk. Thanks to Jeremy at AZ Bird Brains for the id. The zone tailed is a first for me.

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On the hike back up the Grand Canyon, we stopped to rest in a shade spot. I heard a noise behind me and the above juvenile robin was watching us.

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White breasted nuthatches were all over the Grand Canyon park. They were pretty skittish though. I couldn’t get close with my 105mm lens.

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I had my wide-angle lens with me when we went to the Sedona airport to take pictures of the rock formations and I happened to notice these two flies having a party. They let me get pretty close.

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Another critter on the trail back up the Grand Canyon. We were resting (which we did often) and this squirrel stopped in the shade, laid down and covered himself in dust. I guess that’s his way of cooling off. The dirt in the shade was probably cooler. There were big signs everywhere about not feeding the squirrels and how they will bite you and give you diseases. Lots of nasty pictures on the signs in case you can’t read English. We still saw people feeding them. What does it take?

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Bunnies were everywhere. This one was near the airport.

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I only saw a few lizards. They were much bigger than the ones running around my yard.

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Another bunny running around the golf course.

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The view near our house. There is a small deer in the bottom right corner.

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Right in front of our house. We came back from dinner one night and they were there. We only saw deer at dusk or dark. They must come out on the golf course when they know it will be empty.

Animals were everywhere in Arizona. I was going to concentrate on landscape pictures and only brought my smaller lenses with me but I kept getting tempted to take pictures of them even though they were usually too far away for me to get a good shot. The first morning we woke up at our rental house in Sedona, we had breakfast out on the back patio and birds were everywhere. We had a house finch nest up in the roof with the parents darting in and out. We had 3 empty hummingbird nests in the bushes along the house. We saw several hummingbirds but I could never get a shot with a 105mm lens. I saw my first steller’s jay and spotted towhee but the pictures are so bad I didn’t want to post them. The highlight was the western kingbird. The golf course was full of them. I will absolutely bring my longer lens on my next visit.

Blurry birds from the in-laws yard

There’s been a pair of yellow-bellied sapsuckers in my in-laws yard every time I visit. They move pretty quickly from tree to tree and rarely stay still. My mother-in-law says she hears them banging on the side of the house every once in a while.

I think both this one and the below are black-capped chickadees or carolina chickadees. They were very high up in the trees. They are pretty common here in Atlanta but it’s the first time I’ve seen one.

Chewing on a leaf.

I don’t know what the above is. At first from far away I thought it was a carolina wren. But the colors on the face look different. It looks a little like a brown nuthatch or female red breasted nuthatch. I haven’t seen one that looks like this in Florida. Any ideas?

It was a beautiful weekend and I spent a little time wandering around their yard looking high up in the trees. Their yard is filled with old tall pine trees so the birds stayed up pretty high.

Camera Critters