TEXAS VALLEY SPECIALTIES
Today was a day for cleaning up the gaps in the list for the lower valley. We had seen both Hook-billed Kite and Clay-colored Robin at Santa Ana a few days before, but also wanted better views. Luckily at Anzalduas we managed to get not only better views of the kite, but also added at least 120 Mississippi Kites, and a male Painted Bunting watched in the scope as it bathed in a puddle in the road. At the North American butterfly park we added White-tailed Kite for our third kite species of the day and finally got much better looks at Clay-colored Robin. This one surprised me by singing well into the morning (at least until 10:30 am). If it hadnt been singing it would have been next to impossible to see. This is typical of the breeding season when these birds become much more secretive and sneaky.
In the heat of the day, we took a break and then in the late afternoon headed to the area around Salineno and Chapeno. There were at least three Red-billed Pigeons perched up for scope views on the island at Salineno. On the back road out of town I was truly surprised to come across at least four SCALED QUAIL including this singing male in a small mesquite. This species has been really tough in recent years, so this was a nice bit of luck to wrap up the day!