Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Warning - LOTS of bird photos :)

We're still in the campsite by the Rio Grand and still no mice. Tomorrow I have mail coming and might move on after I receive it up at the Visitor's Center.  My shopping list is getting long and I think I want to get my shopping done and relocate to the next campground before the weekend comes.

I have a lot of photos in this post, but I always reduce my pictures to 800 x 600 px, so hopefully you'll have no problems opening them. 

Birds at Caballo Lake - Riverside Campground

I'm not sure what this bird is - he's got quite the "do" though.  Anybody know? I found three birds in my field guide that might have worked, but I don't know.  Can you see his whiskers?

Thank you to everyone who commented with a suggestion - the consensus is that he is a Brown-crested Flycatcher. The photos in my field guides show other Flycatchers that look very much the same, and none of them has this wonderful crest, so I'm thinking he might be showing off for a female?  I guess his top feathers are normally flat on his head - I wouldn't have noticed him half as much if that's how he appeared - maybe I'm part bird...  I was sure impressed!

Three Great Blue Herons - I didn't see the third one until I pulled up the photo on the computer:

Great White Egret:


I can't find this bird with the yellow belly:

Not sure about this guy, either:

More Northern Shovelers:

Spotted Sandpiper:

Yellow Warbler:

Bullock's Oriole:

Hummer - female Black-chinned?

Northern Mockingbird:

White-crowned Sparrow:

American Robin:


When he flew away I saw the white under his wings:

I can't find this bird in the field guide, either:

And here are two fish photos when they were rolling around in the water:

That's a lot of photos, I know.  If you're still here with us, thanks!

A big WELCOME to two new Followers:

Susan Hammer - You don't show any information, so all I can do is give you a big welcome to our blog - and thank you for following along with us, Susan!

Duane has a blog - Duane's World.   It isn't an RV blog, but he says he loves to write - me too! - and wants to share some ideas with the world.  Thanks for becoming a Follower, Duane!

Welcome aboard to you both, we're happy to have you following along!

From me and Katie, have a great Tuesday, everyone!  :)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Squirrels, Kangaroo Rat, Mouse and 2 new birds!

It seems nothing much is going on until I look at all the photos I have waiting to be posted.

Our last day at Elephant Butte main campground I had a visit from Donna and Bob, whom I met at Rock Hound and then saw again at Poncho Villa.  I was packing up to leave when they drove up, and we spent some time visiting.  They were looking for another friend who wasn't home and saw us outside, and stopped for a bit.  After they left Tom and Roxi came over for a visit.  I met Tom at Quartzsite, and he had stopped by the day before.  He had been driving by, and recognized me.  We sat down and visited for a while, and it turns out he is camping where Roxi is, and just met her that morning.  That next morning they both came over to visit.  I was just packed up and was ready to leave, so they got there just in time.  

After the Easter weekend and all the craziness, I wanted to be in a quieter place.  So we drove out of the main park and started driving to the South Monticello campground.  I wanted to park in the parking lot above the boat ramp directly below the campground.  We stayed overnight, but I felt too isolated, so we got back on the road.

As soon as we hit the road, Katie started barking and wouldn't stop.  She was just sitting in her car seat, barking and trying to sniff the dashboard.  Oh-oh!  I stopped the car at the first pull-out and opened the hood.  EEEEKKKKK!  There was a Kangaroo Rat looking at me, sitting in a pile of cedar bits spilling out from the Fresh Cab he had chewed open. I jumped back and screamed and dropped the hood.  This photo from the Internet is what he looked like - up on his back legs looking right at me:

I'm sure he jumped back and screamed, as well, and hustled down through the engine onto the road and ran away.  When I got back with my Reacher in case I had to remove him, opened the hood again and checked, he was gone.  I checked the engine, but no damage.  Whew.  Back on the road with Kudos to Katie.  (I thought he was a pack rat until I went on-line for a photo, and realized it was a Kangaroo Rat.  I've never seen one of these guys before.)

We went into T or C and did laundry, gassed up the truck, shopped at Wal-Mart and then headed back to Caballo Lake.

I picked a campsite across from the showers which was up a ways from our previous site where we got the mice last time.  Next morning we had two squirrels and one mouse stuck on our traps in the engine.  I don't mind getting the mice because they are easy to kill (sorry), but the squirrels are different.  They were large enough to get themselves off the sticky stuff, but I don't want to go through that again.  Trust me, it hurt me way more than it hurt them.  I had no idea the squirrels were getting into the engine.  I removed the sticky traps and put small baited enclosed mouse traps in the engine with duct tape.  Then we moved down the road to be along the river and hopefully away from the squirrels.

It's peaceful here and this area is empty except for us and Ryan - The New Age Nomad, who we finally met.

When Katie and I pass by his campsite on our walks, he usually comes out to say hi and talk for while.  He's a good neighbor, and it's nice to have someone else down here with us.  It's Thursday evening, and I'm surprised we haven't gotten more campers here for the weekend.

I haven't seen a single squirrel here, even though we're pretty close to the main Riverside Campground.  Weird, but I'm happy!  I hope we'll be able to stay here the full two weeks, and so far no critters to be seen.  Just birds and the occasional duck on the river.   

Here are some of the birds I've snapped in the last week.  I think they are all from Elephant Butte down by the boat ramp.

This is a new bird for me, a Clark's Grebe:

This Killdeer was in the parking lot and we saw him as we were walking along.  He didn't seem bothered that we were there:

Pretty lizard with turquoise markings:

This is another new bird for me - a female Ring-necked duck:

I think this is a Sandpiper, or maybe a Willet?  Hazel thinks it might be a Willet, which was my second choice.  If so, then it's another First Sighting:

And some of the flowering plants at Elephant Butte State Park:

WELCOME to our newest follower, Susan Hammer.  Susan doesn't show any information, so I can't give you any links.  Susan, if you have a blog, let me know and I'll post it so our readers can check it out.  Thanks for following along with me and Katie - Welcome Aboard!  :)

From me and Katie, have a great Thursday, everybody!  :)