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Blog Birding #56

For most of the continent, fall is sparrow time.  Jeremy Medina, writing at Birding is Fun, is ready for it.

This monsoon season was Tucson's 10th wettest on record.  From June 15th to September 30th we received 8.62 inches of rain!  That's a lot for the desert.  The official measurement is taken at the airport only 2 miles from my home.  Why is this significant, you ask?  Well, all that rain turned my neighborhood birding patch into prime sparrow habitat.  Different grasses started growing all over, reaching four feet high in some places.  Red, orange, yellow, and purple flowers even popped up.

Robert from Birding Bros. blog goes beyond the birds in he finds in the field, and takes a look at 10 incredible extinct birds that will knock your socks off.

As a birder, it's a necessity to find passion in those birds around you, among them some of the coolest, rarest, and most interesting species to ever walk this Earth – amazing birds like the Araripe Manakin of South America, the Shoebill of Africa, and the Kagu of New Caledonia. But there's an entire other league of birds with which I've been interested for a long time, and I've decided to share them with you today. These are some of the coolest, rarest, and most interesting species of birds to ever walk this Earth – that are, for one reason or another, no longer alive to tell their tale.

At Utah Birders, Tim Avery heads into the field to photograph that amazing subspecies of Red-tailed Hawk known as Harlan's:

Harlan's Hawks as I like to call them (as opposed to just Red-tailed Hawk) are a nemesis bird for me. In all my years birding I had only seen a handful. For someone who had seen 1,000's of Red-tailed Hawks and spent plenty of winter days birding across northern Utah it was strange that for the most part this species had eluded me. Not terribly rare in Utah it was the type of species you would expect to encounter each winter–at least if you spent a few days wandering around locations that had concentrations of raptors.

Birdchaser Rob Fergus takes his kids out to find a Snowy Owl:

This morning the kids were out of school, so we headed over to Merrill Creek Reservoir near our house to see the Snowy Owl that was found there on Wednesday.  After hiking almost a mile out onto the dam, the bird was easily seen perched on a rock out of the wind below the dam.

At the blog simply called Birder, an Ode to a Yellow Warbler:

Despite all their variety and myriad forms, the Yellow Warbler remains one of the most simple and ubiquitous of the wood-warblers, always familiar as the little yellow bird that readily approaches at the first hint of a spish. Colorful and curious, the Yellow Warbler is frequently one of the first birds I see on many trips throughout the Americas. Like a mug of hot chocolate or mulled cider, they are always comforting  and warming – a reminder of home even in a faraway land.  

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