Birding By Habitat: Radar Road 5/25/22
May 25, 2022
Wednesday, May 25, 2022, 6:30am-11:30am
Weather: Sunny and cold
Location: Radar Road
This unique opportunity to bird in a rich habitat area that is closed to the public allowed us to explore various mountain shrubland communities near the upper elevational limits of their range in the valley. Our route started in moist, leafy shrublands composed of chokecherry, willow, and serviceberry, passed through cottonwood forest and cottonwood/willow riparian along Owl Creek, and progressed into drier shrublands with hawthorn and scrub oak, and to xeric shrublands with mountain mahogany, bitterbrush, and juniper. The species of birds present changed through these areas; for example, Virginia’s Warblers and Dusky Flycatchers occupy the drier communities, and Cordilleran Fllycatchers and Yellow Warblers occupy the riparian corridors. Black-headed Grosbeaks and Orange-crowned Warblers seemed to be versatile, using other habitat types where their preferred oak shrubland ecosystem bordered other plant communities. Highlights included: the overall abundance of birds, seeing birds that were singing and learning their voices (Fox Sparrow, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Dusky Flycatcher, etc), seeing an active raven nest, and exploring birds in a place where human activity is minimal. Other highlights were the sweeping views of peaks, glacial geology, ranch history, and elk migration corridors. Join us for our next birding outing!
~ Rebecca Weiss, ACES Bird Guide