Eric Moore is the owner of Jay’s Bird Barn, with two locations in northern Arizona — Prescott and Flagstaff. Eric has been an avid birder for over 50 years. If you have questions about wild birds that you would like discussed in future articles, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My wife, Gayla, served as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Munich, Germany Mission from December of 1981 to June of 1983. Later, when we married, she wanted to share her love of Germany with me by taking a trip there together.
This past Saturday I led a free Jay’s Bird Barn guided bird walk to Granite Basin. This is one of my favorite places to go birding locally. I’ve had a lot of amazing discoveries there — birds that “shouldn’t” be in the Prescott area, yet somehow end up in this unique confluence of habitats.
Arizona has the reputation for the greatest variety of hummingbird species in North America, although Texas would dispute this fact. The majority of Arizona’s hummingbird species occur close to the Mexico border; the further north you go, the fewer the varieties. Here is a rundown on the various hummingbirds that have been observed in Prescott.
Nesting season has already been underway for several months for many early nesting bird species such as bald eagles and great-horned owls. Even some of our smaller song birds start nesting in February and March.
At this point, spring migration is still just a trickle, but the number of bird species on the move will grow every week until it reaches its peak in early May. As the days continue to get longer, the Arizona Central Highlands will experience a tremendous change in the variety and quantity of bird species at backyard feeders.
While COVID is not necessarily in our rearview mirror, I am excited to announce that for the first time since 2019, several of the annual birding festivals are going to be in-person this year. If you have never attended a birding festival, I strongly recommend participating! Here are some upcoming events over the next few months...
Hummingbird sightings continue to come in. Since last week, I’ve had reports of four different species at backyard bird feeders — Anna’s, rufous, broad-tailed and black-chinned. If you haven’t put out a hummingbird feeder yet, I’d suggest getting at least one feeder up right away, if not more.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! As I was thinking of a topic to write about this week, my mind settled on the thought of how there are so few songbirds with green plumage.
Over the last two weeks, my column has provided helpful tips on how to improve your bird identification skills. Today’s column will continue in the same vein. Another key piece of knowledge that can be helpful when identifying wild birds is to observe what the bird in question is eating.