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Hazelbazemore Trip ~ Sept 27th-30th 2002

This was another great trip down to the Corpus Christi area of South Texas. We had good sunny weather with light winds and temperatures ranging from 70-90 degrees. The main purpose of this trip was the Hawk Watch at Hazel Bazemore where thousands of hawks are seen as they migrate through and We were not disappointed! The largest numbers of hawks we saw while there each day of our trip numbered around 10,000, yet the totals for the day reached numbers above 200,000! Thousands of them would "kettle" upwards on the thermals before "Streaming" onwards until they needed to gain height again and would once again form huge kettles looking like a tornado of hawks! The hawks that made up the majority of these "kettles" were Broad-winged Hawks. Other hawks included Peregrine Falcon, Kestrels, Merlin, Sharp-shinned, Coopers, Red-tailed, White-tailed, Red-shouldered and Swainson's Hawks, as well as Anhingas, Wood Storks, Turkey and Black Vultures. Of course when we weren't looking upwards we were looking for passerines and other ground loving birds and these included Baltimore Oriole, Green Jay, Inca dove, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Ruby-throated and Rufous Hummingbirds, Great Kiskadees and Couches Kingbirds. We visited the Hawk Watch for several hours over the first couple of days as well as some other local birdy spots along the Coastal Birding Trail including Choke Canyon SP, Mustang Island and Aransas/Rockport area. On our last day we did a tour of the Fennessy Ranch. For this all 17 of our party sat on covered hay bales on a large trailer pulled by a pickup truck! It was actually a very nice way of seeing the 300,000 + acres of the Ranch, allowing us to jump on and off as needed to walk and see birds. Luckily, the weather was sunny and dry but very hot. Highlight birds included large numbers of Little blue herons, Great, Cattle and Reddish Egrets, Common Snipe, Vermilion and Scissor-tailed flycatchers, Roseate Spoonbills, Golden-fronted and Ladder-backed woodpeckers, Ospreys, Crested Caracaras, Purple Gallinules, Virginia Rail, Ruby-throated hummingbirds and one awesome Kettle of approximately 150 Anhingas! It was a very enjoyable day with a good lunch and plenty of refreshments! I did not personally get any lifers on this trip but seeing familiar birds and some new places with good friends can't be beat! :)
Heres just a few shots of this trip. Enjoy :)

Hazel Bazemore Park
"Hazel Bazemore"

Blessing cermony
Blessing Ceremony
Each year a ceremony is performed by Native American Indians to bless the Hawk Watch site and all the animals and birds that live there.
Just as the ceremony was being performed a beautiful Osprey flew overhead, as though he knew what was going on!.
Wild Turkey
Wild Turkey
Had some great views of very cooperative Turkeys!
Vermillion Flycatcher
This is an immature Vermilion Flycatcher taken at the Fennessey Ranch.
Vermilion Flycatcher
Wild Lily
Wild Lilies
These pretty pale blue Lilies were common at the Ranch.

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