I took a break on Friday and we finally drove over to Whitewater Draw to watch the wintering Sandhill Cranes come in for their nooning. I only have a couple of poor photos taken with my little point-n-shoot camera. Here is a YouTube video of what we got to see.
I walked out of the house dressed for a rough outing; old jeans, flip-flops and a plain t-shirt. Oh boy, was I ever surprised to see that me and my little camera were way out classed; birdwatchers in LL Bean-type of clothing, windbreakers all knotted around the waist, cameras, binoculars and unidentified equipment slung around necks and backs.... I didn't know that there were such large binoculars on tripods just to go look at birds! And... cameras .... I swear one camera with a huge long lens was toting around this frail-looking, tiny, grandmotherly woman, instead of the other way around!
(Note: click on any photo to enlarge it)
We drove out of Tombstone, over to the next valley East. Dry scrub and even scrubbier grasslands was all the eye could see. It was hard to imagine that water birds like cranes would pick such a place to spend the winter.
Then you drive down a dusty, unpaved road and see a glint or two of swampy water ponds surrounded with marsh growth.
We sat in the car until we started to see groups of birds overhead. More and more birds looking like large bee swarms overhead and in the distance. All coming in for a little mid-day siesta.
It was a fascinating mid-day outing and the sounds of that many cranes was something to listen to.
The other highlight (oddity?) was watching an American Teal duck swimming around in a tight little circle for about a half an hour. He'd go one way for awhile, then move over and go the other direction. We're still wondering what the purpose of it was.
To finish off the day we kept on going south and made a trip into Naco, Mexico, (a quiet, sleepy, non-tourist village) for a bit of necessary shopping.
It's a lot of fun to look down a side street and see such beautiful examples of texture and color like this.
Now I'm rejuvenated and ready to get back to work and plan for the Tucson Gem show trips.