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Apr
02
2013

Elegant Trogon Surveys, bigger than ever before! Now 4 Sky Islands!

June 1-2 and June 8-9. Many of you may have heard of (or even helped with!) the annual Elegant Trogon Census in

Elegant Trogon by Dominic Sherony

Elegant Trogon by Dominic Sherony

the Chiricahua Mountains and Huachuca Mountains organized by Huchuca Audubon and Rick Taylor of Borderland Tours. This year, Arizona IBA and Tucson Audubon are partnering up with this effort and expanding the search to include the Santa Rita Mountains, Patagonia Mountains and Atascosa Highlands.

June 1-2 will be the Chiricahua Mountains and Huachuca Mountains surveys

  • June 1:  HuachucaMountains
  • June 2: Chiricahua Mountains

June 8-9 will be the Santa Rita Mountains and Patagonia Mountains/Atascosa Highlands surveys

  • June 8: Santa Rita Mountains
  • June 9: Santa Rita Mountains and Atascosa Highlands

Elegant TrogonBirders of all skill levels are invited to join these surveys, if you are interested in helping please contact Jennie at jmacfarland@tucsonaudubon.org

Basic Surveyor info

For each of the 4 survey days, there is a designated meeting time/place before hand to review the survey protocol and a designated drop-off point for data sheets. If you have participated in these surveys in the past and would prefer to not come to the meeting, please let us know and we will get your datasheets and location info to you via email.

  • June 1 – Huachucas – The May 31 meeting will be at 6pm at the Fairfield Inn & Suites Sierra Vista 3855 El Mercado Loop, Sierra Vista, AZ Located on the Southwest corner of Highway 92 & Avenida Cochise (by The Mall at Sierra Vista).  Map here Also, this hotel is offering a special rate for Trogon Counters of $89 plus tax!
    This will also be the drop off location for completed data forms (Right at the front counter) the next day, please try to have your data forms in by noon. If you are running late please call us as soon as you have a phone signal so we know you are safe.
  • June 2 – Chiricahuas – The June 1 meeting will be at 6pm at the US Forest Service Portal Visitor Information Station, located about 3 miles above the Portal Store in Cave Creek Canyon. This will also be the drop off location for completed data forms the next day, please try to have your data forms in by noon. If you are running late please call us as soon as you have a phone signal so we know you are safe.
  • June 8 – Santa Rita Mountains – The June 7th meeting (joint meeting for both Santa Ritas Count and Patagonia Mountains/Atascosa Highlands Count) will be held at the Tucson Audubon Society in the Historic YWCA on University Blvd west of 4th Ave (map here). Parking can be a bit tricky here, here is a parking map. The meeting for BOTH Santa Ritas and Patagonias/Atascosas will be held at 6pm on June 7th. The drop off location for the Santa Ritas (NEW!) will be the Santa Rita Lodge, Jennie will be there as soon as possible to collect forms but if you get there before her please leave them with the great people in their nature shop. Please try to have your data forms in by noon. If you are running late please call us as soon as you have a phone signal so we know you are safe.
  • June 9th – Patagonia Mountains/Atascosa Highlands – The organizational meeting will be held at Tucson Audubon, 6pm June 7th in conjunction with the Santa Rita Mountains meeting (see above). The drop off point for data forms for volunteers in the Patagonias will be Gathering Grounds Cafe in the town of Patagonia (map here). Please try to have your data forms to us by noon, if you are running late please call us as soon as you have a phone signal so we know you are safe. Elegant Trogon in Madera Canyon by Marcel Holyoak
  • For the teams in the Atascosa Highlands, Richard Fray has kindly offered his house in Rio Rico as the drop off point for data.Directions to Richard’s house from I-19: From the Palo Parado exit (25) head east, cross the new Palo Parado bridge and continue to Pendleton Drive (just under a mile) Turn left on Pendleton and continue for just over a mile until you see Avenida Pastor on the right. Turn right onto Avenida Pastor and continue up the hill for just over a mile. My house is on the left just after the pavement ends, number 72, opposite Faro Ct. I’ll leave a box next to the driveway entrance “72” sign.  People can check out my feeders when they drop by, if it’s still light. I’ve got a pair of Ash-throated Flycatchers nesting in a bluebird box, and have had a male Blue Grosbeak coming in the last few days, as well as the usual Black-throated and Rufous-winged Sparrows, Curve-billed Thrashers, Cactus Wrens, Canyon Towhees, Broad-billed and Black-chinned Hummingbirds, Gambel’s Quail, etc. There was a regular male Varied Bunting coming to the feeders last June.

There will be two types of survey protocols being used for these surveys.

1) The first is a transect method where you are assigned a linear area to walk in the morning playing an Elegant Trogon call every 1/2 mile and recording any responses you get.Please note that we will NOT be playing calls where it is prohibited such as Madera Canyon and South Fork! You will also be keeping a species list of all bird species you encounter.

2) The second is a stationary method where we will space individuals or teams up a canyon and ask you to stay stationary in the center of “your territory” from 6-9am and record all trogon calls you hear and whether they were down-canyon or up-canyon from your center position. After 9am you will able to roam around “your territory” and try to find the individuals you have been hearing and hopefully locate a nest site! You will also be keeping a list of all other bird species you encounter. We will be using this method mainly in Madera Canyon and South Fork.

When you come to the information meeting for your area you will receive detailed protocols, data sheets and information on the location of your survey area. We will also talk about the different types of vocalizations that Elegant Trogons make and what that indicates. If you know what to listen for you can tell the difference between paired and unpaired males and females also have their own way of vocalizing. If you have participated in these surveys in the past and would prefer to not come to the meeting, please let us know and we will get your datasheets and location info to you via email.

The main contacts for these surveys are:

Rick Taylor of Borderland Tours

Contact: rtaylor AT borderland-tours.com (replace the At with an @)

and Jennie MacFarland of the Tucson Audubon Society

Contact: jmacfarland AT tucsonaudbon.org (replace the At with an @) cell phone: (520) 360-2213

About the author

Jennie

Jennie is the Coordinating Biologist for the Arizona Important Bird Area program and an employee of the Tucson Audubon Society. She likes birding and other cool nerdy activities.