Recent Sightings

  
San Juan County

Jun 2014

Keeli Marvel (17 Jun 29014) - Four UCBers made the trip down to Grand and San Juan counties last weekend for our 2014 birding challenge.  Friday was a tough sell with warm temps and gusty winds.  We started by picking up a couple of species at the rest stop just before Crescent Junction.  Then we made a quick trip into Arches NP where we picked up two juvenile Black-throated sparrows. We birded briefly along the Colorado River where the hwy crosses it coming into town and picked up a couple more species. 
   --From there we went to the Matheson Preserve and birded both north and south sides of the preserve, picking up several more species including Ash-throated Flycatcher, Yellow-breasted Chat, Plumbeous Vireo, and Blue-gray gnatcatcher.  We spent the late afternoon on the east side of Moab, picking up species one by one.  There were Wood Ducks and domestic ducks and geese at the Old City Park pond.  In the neighborhoods around the golf course on the east side we found a Scrub Jay and some White-throated Swifts, and then we finished up with a flyover Great Blue Heron while eating dinner.
   --On Saturday, we started the morning off at Ken's Lake just southeast of Moab in San Juan County.  On the way in to the lake we picked up Lark Sparrows and Horned Larks.  There weren't any waterfowl on the lake, but the trees in the little inlet on the south end held tons of birds.  Highlights included Ash-throated Flycatcher, Blue Grosbeak, and another Yellow-breasted Chat.  From there we headed south to Monticello, and the Devil's Canyon Campground.  We picked up the rest of our 29 species (and then some) with a bunch of species including Steller's Jay, Western Bluebirds, Western Tanager, White-breasted Nuthatch, Green-tailed Towhee, Spotted Towhee, and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher as well as a few others. We were not able to locate any Pygmy Nuthatches or Acorn Woodpeckers, but the area was quite birdy. Saturday made up for the warm weather and slow birding on Friday and we had a great trip. Thanks to those who came out!

Apr 2014

Bryan Shirley (18 May 2014) - Last night I saw a BLACK TERN at the sewage ponds just south of Blanding. There were several Blue-winged Teal there as well.

Apr 2014

Jim Hook (18 Apr 2014) - The sprinklers are on ˝ mile east of Bluff this evening, I saw (conservatively) 200 White Faced Ibis (regular spring) and 1 Sand Hill Crane (uncommon, spring) on the Bill Davis Farm and the Bill Gaines Farm.

Sep 2013

Jim Hook (10 Sep 2013) - [Bluff, UT] -  I watched an American White Pelican circle about 4 revolutions over the Post Office at noon in Bluff on Saturday, September 7, 2013, at about 100’ and then glide east up the San Juan River. I didn’t have field glasses but could easily see all white with lots of black on the wings, big bird, neck pulled back into a tight “s”, even could see orange bill. I called several non-birder types (including the post master) out of the Post Office to look and though not as excited as I, they could easily see the markings I was pointing out.

Aug 2013

Kay Stone (10 Aug 1013)- Last Thursday afternoon and evening and Friday morning Jim Strong, Lynn Nielsen and myself went down to Devil's Canyon just south of Monticello  and saw an Acorn Woodpecker.  We just drove into the campground by the Host's Trailer as an Acorn Woodpecker flew right past us.  It disappeared into a nearby tree for a couple of minutes and then flew out again headed to the east.  It was a great look showing all the field marks.  Later we traveled on the large loop road outside of the campground and saw Pygmy and White Breasted Nuthatches, Western Bluebirds, Grace's Warblers, Mountain Chickadees, Gray Vireo, and several other species.  We also saw many deer, turkeys,and a Kaibab Squirrel.  I have never seen so many Pygmy Nuthatches and last year I struggled to see just one.  It was a great trip and the weather was superb.

Nov 2012

Bryan Shirley (3 Nov 2012) - Today at Arches National Park I was surprised to see a flock of 34 Black Rosy Finches picking seeds out of the red sand. We were at the Devil's Garden parking area. While hiking we was Bush Tits and a few Juniper Titmice.

Sep 2012

Dave Hanscom (1 Sep 2012) - Just got back from a long day of driving (600 miles) with Ned Bixler, Pat Jividen, and Paul Lombardi to see the spoonbll. We found it from the overlook at mile 41.3. It was on our side of the Colorado, so we drove down to a better viewing point just beyond the turnout at mile 42 and got some great looks.
   --We took the long way home through Blanding and stopped at Devil's Canyon, where the Acorn Woodpeckers were very cooperative. As reported by Bryant Olsen, they're hanging out in their usual spot east of the highway just north of the campground entrance in some dead trees. No luck on pygmy nuthatches, despite an hour of searching.
   --A side trip on county road 333 a couple of miles north of Montecello yielded a nice variety of birds, including Western Bluebird, Ferruginous Hawk, Say's Phoebe, Western Kingbird, and Black-throated Sparrow....

Aug 2012

Bryant Olsen (31 Aug 2012) - I took a trip to San Juan county this past week as a continuation of my exploration of the high elevations of the La Sal mountains trying to document high elevation species in that range that I have been doing for the past few years...  I did see several AMERICAN PIPITS,and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS up there, and it was quite a busy day for other birds in the alpine, including a PINYON JAY, a TOWNSEND'S WARBLER, AUDUBON'S WARBLERS, PINE SISKINS, and JUNCOS, crossing over the alpine passes and RAVENS, KESTRELS and SHARP-SHINNED HAWKS soaring over the ridge. The best birds up on top were a huge flock of WHITE-THROATED SWIFTS playing a game of "scare the crap of the human by shooting past him at 100 mph within just a few feet". ... did see some other good birds in this range on the trip, including the 2 DUSKY GROUSE mentioned above, a NORTHERN PYGMY OWL, 6 BAND-TAILED PIGEONS,3 GRAY JAYS, and several PINE GROSBEAKS. I played extensively for Boreal Owls,with no response. A Short-tailed Weasel hunting for chipmunks around camp was an added bonus.
   -- ... On the way back from Colorado, I went to the Devil's camp ground near Monticello and finally, after looking for them for years there, found 2 ACORN WOODPECKERS. They were in dead ponderosa pines in the canyon across the road to the east of the camp ground. I must say that camp ground was the birdyist place on the trip, and was swarming with warblers, vireos, nuthatches and more. Must be something of a migrant trap. Best birds, besides the Acorn Woodpecks ,were great looks at a NASHVILLE WARBLER, with the Jensen's who just happened to be in the area, and 3 TOWNSEND'S WARBLERS. Loads of PYGMY NUTHATCHES and RED CROSSBILLS were fun too. Couldn't turn any of the numerous PLUMBEOUS VIREOS into Cassin's though...

Norm Jenson (26 Aug 2012)- We ran into to Bryant at Devils Canyon Campground who informed us that he'd seen Acorns not in the campground itself but opposite the campground on the east side of highway 191 from the campground entrance north .5 miles check all the dead trees. We also saw Grace's Warblers there.

Bryan Shirley (23 Aug 2012) - I have been in San Juan County for about a week and have seen a bunch of good birds. The best was a pair of Acorn Woodpeckers quite high up in the Abajo Mtns. The location is on the North Fork/Blanding Road about 1/2 through the road there is a trailhead for the Shay Ridge Trail. The woodpeckers were in the dead trees across the road from the trail.
   --Here are some other good birds I've seen:
   --One morning near Lloyd Lake I counted 10 Townsend's, 8 Nashville, 6 Black-throated Gray, and more
   --Orange-crowned Warblers than I have ever seen in one spot. They were coming to drink and bath in a spring. Possibly a Hermit Warbler as well (not seen by me).
   --A flock of 75 Evening Grosbeaks on Shay Ridge
   --A flock of 50-70 Band-tailed Pigeons flying around Foy Lake
   --Red-Crossbill basically everywhere in the mountains

Bryan Shirley (19 Aug 2012) -  Saw the Roseate Spoonbill at about 11:00 this morning. We were at a small pullout just above the boat launch. I think it was about mile 42. There was one other birder there, but I didn't ask his name. I also saw my first Nashville Warbler of the fall near Monticello.

Steve Carr
(7 Aug 2012) - Pat Jividen and I did see the ROSEATE SPOONBILLThursday at 6 p.m., but not where it had been reported on July 6 and 26. It has now moved down to the upper waters of Lake Powell...

Apr 2012

David Wheeler (9 Apr 2012) - Mojo & I went out last weekend to see what we could see in San Juan County. We had a good time. Here are some avian highlights:
   --Gunnison Sage-grouse east of Monticello [though I could not find any display activity at the usual lek spot (they do move year-to year), despite being there before dawn]
   --Pygmy & White-breasted nuthatches in/around Devil's Canyon NF Campground (dang those WB nuthatches are handsome birds!)
   --Lucy's warblers at just about any riparian spot from Bluff to Montezuma Creek Canyon (four alone in 1 parking lot in Bluff), singing their heads off.
   --Barn swallows (x3) on wires by town of Montezuma Creek.
   --Evening grosbeaks all over southern end of Monticello.

Dec 2011

Jim Hook (16 Dec 2011) We now have 4 different sightings from yesterday and today of a California Condor soaring and perching on a power pole about 5 miles south of Blanding near the White Mesa Uranium Mill on Highway 191. All 4 persons have seen condors at the Grand Canyon and all 4 persons had a Red-tail Hawk on the next power pole for comparison, with the Condor being 3x taller. There have been many road killed mule deer in this area over the last 3 weeks. Yesterday Tanner Desrosier and Thomas Hook saw the bird from the school bus, today Luanne Hook and later Brandt Hart parked and watched the bird fly away. All viewers are residents of Bluff. Good enough for me, I hope to see it tomorrow!

Aug 2011

Bryant Olsen (25 Aug 2011) - Earlier in the week I went down and spent a couple nights in the La Sal Mountains east of Moab in San Juan co.... I did see some interesting birds, including a couple TOWNSEND'S WARBLERS, which I presume are early migrants heading south, and a pair of NORTHERN THREE-TOED WOODPECKERS, one of which was a fledgling based on the yellow on the forehead... I had an unusual experience while fishing Dark Canyon Lake, I suddenly looked up and saw over 100 WHITE-THROATED SWIFTS, which then descended on the lake, even skimming the surface drinking? or eating some bugs. ...Also I saw a couple BAND-TAILED PIGEONS near the same lake.

Bryan Shirley (24 Aug 2011) - I saw my first Nashville Warbler of the fall last night near Lloyd's Lake (just outside of Monticello).  Surprisingly, they are fairly regular migrants here.  Last year on Aug 26,  I saw 6. Also in town I saw a flock of 15 Evening Grosbeaks.

May 2011

Dave Hanscom (8 May 2011) - {Matheson Wetlands] - There are a couple of ponds in the north end of the preserve, so there were lots of water birds.  The south end has a combination of tall trees and scrubby vegetation, so good habitat for a variety of species.  Birds seen included Lazuli Bunting, Dusky Flycatcher, Cassin's Vireo, Wilson's Phalarope, Yellowthroat, Hermit Thrush, House Wren, and Bullock's Oriole. Nothing we won't see up here in the next few weeks. Arches yielded Black-throated Sparrow, Rock Wren, White-throated Swift, Violet-green Swallow, Cooper's Hawk...
   --Since Monticello [Grand Co.] was so close, I couldn't resist a quick visit to Devil's Canyon Campground to look for Acorn Woodpecker and Pygmy Nuthatch.  Both were there, along with many Western Bluebirds, a Juniper Titmouse, a couple of White-breasted Nuthatch, and a very cooperative Black-throated Gray Warbler

Apr 2011

Alton Thygerson (17 April 2011) - My wife and I We drove to Devil Canyon campground (off of highway 191 and between Monticello and Blanding). After spending most of the afternoon in the
area, we observed the following specialty birds: ACORN WOODPECKER, WILLIAMSON’S SAPSUCKER, PYGMY NUTHATCH, WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH, and WESTERN BLUEBIRD. Recapture Reservoir was almost birdless—one COMMON LOON, EARED GREBES,
and a single gull.

Justin Shirley (16 April 2011) - The Acorn Woodpeckers are still in Devils Canyon. I watched two this morning on the east side of Highway 191 at Devils Canyon (between Monticello and Blanding). They are easily seen from the highway - usually on the east side as you start up the south side of the canyon.

Mar 2011

Office @ RecaptureLodge (5 Mar 2011) - A suspected male Greater Roadrunner has become a common sight just north of the Navajo Fair Grounds in Bluff. This morning he is calling from the roof of a porch until the resident cat approaches, then jumps down and leads the cat on a merry chase into Cottonwood Wash only to reappear on the roof later.

Aug 2010

Bryan Shirley (26 Aug 2010) -  I have been in Monticello for the last week or so and have seen lots of migrant warblers. Orange-crowned, Black-throated Gray, Yellow-rumped, and Virginia's make up the bulk of them.  We have been seeing 5-10 Townsend's Warblers everyday and several Nashville most days as well. I had 7 Nashville this morning alone. The location is basically along the road from Lloyd's lake to Abajo Peak.

Dave Hanscom (25 Aug 2010) - Thanks to the several of you who suggested Devil's Canyon Campground for Pygmy Nuthatch. The place is infested with them. I parked my car at the entrance and walked only about 50 yards north before hearing and seeing the first bunch.  Also, the Acorn Woodpecker that hangs out near the dip in the highway about a half mile north of the campground was in his usual spot just east of the road.

Justin Shirley (7 Aug 2010)  -  The Acorn Woodpeckers are still in Devil's Canyon just off of Highway 191. They are visible from the Highway most days. They are usually on the east side of the highway in a couple of dead ponderosas on the south side of the canyon.

Jun 2010

Carl Ingwell (15 June 2010) - Found a nesting Hairy Woodpecker w/ young in a Gambel's Oak near Sipapu Bridge in Natural Bridges today.  Fun stuff.

May 2010

Carl Ingwell (19May 2010) - [Island in the Sky, UT] - Over the last three days I have been doing surveys at Island in the Sky.  It's all pinon/juniper work & I'm getting all the normal stuff you find in such a habitat:  Gray Vireo, Gray Flycatcher, Pinon Jays, Black-throated Gray Warbler, Bewick's Wren, Lark Sparrow singing outside my tent at about 4 AM today.  I also had a Red-Breasted Nuthatch calling.

Carl Ingwell (12 May 2010) - Worked Natural Bridges again today... I also saw a Black-Headed Grosbeak, a White-Breasted Nuthatch & a pair of what appeared to be nesting Perigrine Falcons. I know I didn't see anything that neat, but I enjoyed it.

Carl Ingwell (11 May 2010) - It was cold and windy in Natural Bridges today, but I got a decent survey before the bad weather. Had a Cordilleran Flycatcher, a White-Breasted Nuthatch, a Wilson's Warbler, a Black-headed Grosbeak, etc. Also, the place was packed with hummingbirds and wildflowers. Nothing too neat, but I had fun. 

Apr 2010

Dave Wheeler ( 12 April 2010) - My family having better things to do, Mojo and I set off alone Friday in search of the Gunnison sage-grouse in SE Utah, which I haven't seen for 9 years. ...  We saw a female WILLIAMSON'S SAPSUCKER and a glimpse of what was likely her mate.  The PYGMY NUTHATCHES were common, with their WHITE-BREASTED cousins less so.  WESTERN BLUEBIRDS were there in good numbers as well--beautiful in the clean morning light.  But still no Acorn woodpeckers.  ... After about three hours, I decided to search for Canyon towhees and Scaled quail southeast of Blanding.  We set off and finally wound up at the Hatch Trading Post. ... I did see a BLACK PHOEBE, CORDILLERAN FLYCATCHER, and a MARSH WREN, along with RING-NECKED DUCKS nearby.  BLACK-THROATED SPARROWS were singing all over the place.  At Hatch trading post, there were several species of sparrow, a singing LUCY'S WARBLER, some AUDUBON'S WARBLERS, and one or two more BLACK PHOEBES.

Dave Wheeler ( 11 April 2010) - There is a female (and I think male, but am not certain) Williamson's Sapsucker in the Devil's Canyon Campground south of Monticello.  At least, it was there Saturday.  Campground is closed due to all the snow...
     Saw Lucy's Warbler singing at Hatch Trading Post.  Despite (at least some of) the range maps, these guys are in SE Utah too.  Ditto Black Phoebes, of which I saw two or three, miles apart...

Dec 2009

Calvin Black (24 Dec 2009) - Calvin Black has a Varied Thrush in his yard in Blanding UT.

May 2009

Jason Pietrzak (9 May 2009) - Tuesday, May 5th, around 9:00 am I was doing a survey down in Comb Wash near the BLM campground near the big pass through Comb Ridge. I was in a wash when a group of birds began chasing each other through the bushes and then, what I believe to be a Black-chinned Sparrow popped out and landed in a low, eye-level branch of a mid-size Cottonwood.

Dec 2008

Lu Giddings (30 Dec 2008) - Dennis Shirley and I just returned from a great trip to San Juan county and yesterday's Bluff Christmas Bird Count. I'm still in the process of compiling data so a full report will follow in a day or so. In the interim, the following observations were made:  - a pair of White-winged Doves was sighted near Cemetery Hill in Bluff yesterday. The birds were again located this morning and photographed. - a White-throated Sparrow was spotted yesterday at Jim Hook's feeders at Recapture Lodge in Bluff. The bird was again observed this morning.

(14 Dec 2008) A record was sent in to the records committee for a Brown-capped Rosy-Finch seen at a private residence, visiting feeders south of Moab. 

Oct 2008

Lu Giddings (5 Oct 2008) - ...I just returned from four rather soggy days in San Juan county. ...But the trip was not without its rewards. - a White-winged Crossbill was seen late Thursday afternoon at Blue Lake in the La Sals, a few miles south of Geyser Pass. This is, to the best of my knowledge, a first record of this species in the Four Corners area.- I heard what I believe was a pine grosbeak in the same area as the above-mentioned crossbill. Unfortunately I could not find the bird, as I believe this would be a first sighting for the county.- in between rain squalls and hail storms, an American three-toed Woodpecker was seen on Elk Ridge a few miles south of the Kigalia station early Friday afternoon. This is the first reported sighting of this species for the county of which I am aware.- Two or more gray jays were seen in three different locations in the La Sals south of Geyser Pass. All sightings occurred at an elevation of 10,200' or more. ...

May 2008

Lu Giddings (28 May 2008) - A Red-eyed Vireo was seen at 4 p.m. yesterday in the oak and pinion-juniper to the north of Recapture reservoir. I had a chance to watch it for about 30-40 minutes although it was far too active to successfully photograph. It wasn't really keeping company with any other birds but the vegetation was fairly alive with chipping sparrows, Virginia's and black-throated gray warblers, and plumbeous and warbling vireos. Take the north Recapture Reservoir road about 125-150 yards west of Highway 191, mostly along the north side of the road, although it seems unlikely that the bird will stick around for long.

Apr 2008

Buck Russell (14 Apr 2008) - This past weekend I was able to visit the Monticello area to experience the Gunnison Sage-grouse. A small group of us traveled to see these wonderful birds. The two leks we visited are on private land. We coordinated our trip with Guy Wallace, DWR biologist, and his wife Tammy, BLM biologist. They gave us a wonderful overview on the birds life and condition and took us out to the leks on Saturday morning.

Dec 2007

Lu Giddings (3 Jan 2008) - The first annual Bluff CBC was held on Saturday December 29th. Total Count: 64 species ...Ross's Goose... Hooded Merganser ... Eurasian Collared-Dove... Northern Shrike...

Sep 2007

Lu Giddings - (16 Sep 2007) - A female Indigo Bunting was seen Friday, 9/14 at about 9 a.m. roughly one mile east of Bluff, in some tamarisks and other bushes along the San Juan river, in the company of roughly a dozen female lazuli buntings. I saw what I am fairly sure was a Least Flycatcher on Friday 9/14 at about 1 p.m. about 7 miles east of Bluff and about 0.25 miles north of the San Juan river... Eurasian Collared-Doves were seen in Monticello, Blanding, Bluff, Mexican Hat, Halchita, and at Hatch's. There were more of them in Bluff than at any time I have seen in the last two years. In just one flock in Bluff this morning I counted in excess of 30 birds.

Aug 2007

...A possible Chihuahuan Raven was reported by Tim Avery from Hickman Flats Road just north of Monticello on Friday, August 3rd

Jul 2007

Tim Avery (12 Jul 2007) - Spent 4 scorching hot days in San Juan County this week. The highlight of the week was an adult male Indigo Bunting in Montezuma Creek Canyon this morning. The bird was seen about a 1/2 mile from where one was seen a month ago during a survey.

Jun 2007

Tim Avery (14 June 2007) - Devil's Canyon Campground... A single Acorn Woodpecker could be seen from HWY 191 on the east side of the road, I believe there may be a nest in the area as I saw the bird near a cavity. 4 Pygmy Nuthatches and around 10 Grace's Warblers were also seen/heard.

Tim Avery (8 June 2007) - Yesterday afternoon while driving from Blanding to Montezuma Creek Canyon I saw a meadowlark that looks good for an Eastern just to the west of Doc Redd's place... I was able to watch the bird for about a minute before it flew directly over me and onto Dr. Redd Property, before dropping in the grass out of view. The malar was distinctly pale (not yellow, white-pale), and the birds flanks were more or less streaked. The bird didn't appear as pale as I would have imagined a "Lilian's" form to be. Unfortunately, the bird did not vocalize, and I checked the area again today without seeing the bird again.

Apr 2007

Steve Carr (15 Apr 2007 ) - This last Friday and Saturday the Salt Lake Birders and Utah Ornithological Society conducted a field trip to SE Utah. All 3 target birds were sighted, as were several other interesting and unusual ones. Thanks to Guy Wallace and Sarah Lupis of the Utah DWR in Monticello, we were treated to a lekful of 20+ strutting male Gunnison Sage-Grouse, and some hens. Two of the 3 Scaled Quail that have been seen recently in Montezuma Creek Canyon were seen in basically the same area where seen previously. The Acorn Woodpecker at Devil's Canyon Campground made several showings. All 3 sightings were life birds for many of the group.

(12 Apr 2007) - Arnold, Linda, Aaron, Shauna and Celeste Smith got good looks at the pair of Scaled Quail on April 3rd in the previously mentioned spot by Dennis Shirley. We also found a first-year immature Golden-crowned Sparrow at the little pond about half mile south from the canyon with the quail. We did spot several Gunnison Sage Grouse as well.

Mar 2007

Rick Fridell (18 Mar 2007) - Kevin Wheeler, Larry Tripp, and I made a weekend run through San Juan County. One of the biggest highlights was the previously reported Scaled Quail (3), still present at Montezuma Creek on Saturday, March 17 (originally found in early January by J. Shirley). We also saw a female Wood Duck on the Blanding Sewer Ponds.

Feb 2007

Joel and Kathy Beyer (19 Feb 2007) - Kathy and I found the 3 Scaled Quail in San Juan Co. on Friday afternoon (the 16th) at the dry seep location. They were quite accommodating, running out in front of us about 30 feet away, less than 10 minutes after we got out of our vehicle. Great directions!  Some other nice birds seen during the trip were - San Juan Co.: Acorn Woodpecker and Williamson's Sapsucker (male) at Devils Canyon campground (~10 miles south of Monticello), Northern Shrike along Hwy 191...

Steve Carr (10 Feb 2007) - We took a very impromptu UOS Quick Chase yesterday afternoon and today to find the Scaled Quail. We followed Dennis Shirley's excellent directions... This a.m., we got to the site at 7:45 a.m., had no luck till 10 a.m., when Pat Jividen heard one clucking - then we all heard the unmistakable calls. He was also able to find the covey, all 3 birds still present. The weather was cool but not really cold.

Jan 2007

Jack Binch (28 Jan 2007) - Scaled Quail... Other highlights were a couple of White-throated Sparrows at Jim Hook's feeders in Bluff (me). An Acorn Woodpecker and Pygmy Nuthatches in Monticello for the three of us.

Lu Giddings (21 Jan 2007) - Three brave souls made the Friday night drive to Bluff. They awoke Saturday morning to the leavings of a once-in-a-decade storm that had dropped 4-6" of snow on a town that seldom sees more than a dusting. This did not stop brave soul #1, Steve Sommerfeld, from spotting a White-throated Sparrow in the snow beneath the feeders at the Recapture Lodge in Bluff early Saturday morning.  The roads were a bit sloppy but nothing we brave northern souls are not used to. We soon made our way to the Scaled Quail following Dennis Shirley's perfect directions. Brave soul #2, Cindy Sommerfeld, found the three birds on the north slope at the end of the small dirt road, about 150 yards east of the seep at which they had previously been reported.   While sorting through the wee birds beneath the feeders at the Recapture Lodge this morning, Steve once again spotted his white-throated sparrow and then espied a second, different White-throated Sparrow as we watched the first.

Larene Wyss (16 Jan 2007) - David Wheeler and I drove down to Blanding yesterday and did get the Scaled Quail. The directions provided by Dennis Shirley to get to the draw were perfect. We found the draw easily enough, but had to search around a bit to find the three quail. We searched all along the western edge of the draw where the seep is for quite a while. The seep was frozen. We then decided to split up and search the northern and southern edges towards the front of the draw.  While doing that, a large flock of Pinyon Jays came into the draw along the southern edge, which drew David over to that side where I was to take pictures. While admiring the jays, we started hearing the quail call, and it just took a few seconds to locate the three of them.

J. Shirley - I found Scaled Quail in San Juan county on Saturday, January 6. There were three birds. I confirmed the sightings on January 9, with Dennis Shirley. We found the same three birds in the same location. The location is in Montezuma Canyon -- GPS location (NAD27-conus)12S 0653570/4154140. Dennis wrote down mileage markers and driving directions. Amazingly the birds were in the exact location and did answer to a call.

Dec 2006

Mike Moore - Gilbert, AZ (30 Dec 2006) - I am an Arizona birder. I was driving through Utah on my way back from Colorado. While driving on 191 today just a few miles south of Blanding, my youngest daughter (Kelly Moore) spotted a perched White-tailed Kite in a tree to the west of the highway. We stopped and admired it through binoculars but it was not until I got home and checked the range maps that I realized this might be a significant sighting. If it is, I am reporting it in the hopes someone can confirm it (sorry, I should have made more specific note of where it was but I did not). I would appreciate it if someone could let me know what he status of white-tailed kite in Utah is. Thanks.

May 2006

Lu Giddings (13 May 2006) - I just returned from several days in San Juan county... Trip highlights in no particular order: - a Greater Scaup on one of the Halchita sewage lagoon ponds - a pair of Cassin's Vireos in Kane Creek canyon in Cedar Mesa - more red crossbills than you could shake a stick at in the Elk Ridge country - Williamson Sapsuckers in four different locations, again in Elk Ridge and the Abajos - a Grace's Warbler near a spring in the Elk Ridge country - two Black Phoebes in Montezuma canyon - Cassin's Kingbirds outnumbering western kingbirds by at least a 6-1 margin in the south Montezuma Canyon and Bug Canyon areas - what I believe to be a Clay-colored Sparrow in the same place one was seen last month by the UOS group, in Bluff - what I am reasonably certain were Grasshopper Sparrows calling from the short grass along Hickman Flats road, on two different occasions.

Apr 2006

Tim Avery (10 Apr 2006) - Day 2 began at 5:45 am at the Triangle H motel, the pride of Monticello, not exactly 5 star. We headed northwest of town to look for Gunnison Sage-Grouse. With all the leks being closed to the public until the 15th, we were just hoping to get lucky. As luck would have it we saw 6 or 7 of these dainty grouse… flying away as we drove along the road. Unfortunately no one got a world class look... The next stop was in "historic" Bluff, where Lu took us to his dove spot. There was a White-winged Dove as well as 2 Eurasian Collared-Dove hanging out right in the middle of town.

Tim Avery (9 Apr 2006) - Last night at around 7:00 pm a group of birders on the UOS San Juan County field trip located a sparrow in Cottonwood Wash, north of the town of Bluff. The bird initially threw the group off, as it wasn't something most had seen. When I was finally able to run down the bird I called to the group and told them to come over, the bird was a Clay-colored Sparrow. WE watched it for another 15-20 minutes as it foraged and moved around in the sparse vegetation in the small cove of the canyon we were in...

Feb 2006

Joel and Kathy Beyer (26 Feb 2006) - ...we visited the Monticello area (San Juan Co.) on Wednesday and Thursday. At Devils Canyon we saw two Acorn Woodpeckers and heard a third calling nearby. Other interesting birds in the area were a female Williamson's Sapsucker, a calling Great Horned Owl, 2 or 3 flocks of Bushtits, 3 wren species, Juniper Titmouse, Western and Mountain Bluebirds, innumerable Pygmy and White-breasted Nuthatches, and one lonely Brown Creeper.

Lu Giddings (20 Feb 2006) - A pair of Acorn Woodpeckers was seen today between the Devil's canyon campground entrance and MM 61.

Lu Giddings (18 Feb 2006) - At about 8 a.m. this morning I spotted a pair of White-winged Doves in the northwest portion of Bluff. I assume these are the same birds seen and reported last October and December. About 15-20 Eurasian Collared-Doves and a large but uncounted flock of great-tailed grackles were also seen in town.

Dec 2005

Lu Giddings (20 Dec 2005) - ... I observed a flock of 26 Eurasian Collared-Doves in a feedlot in southeast Monticello at 8:15 a.m. this morning. I also observed a total of seven Eurasian Collared-Doves in Bluff later this afternoon...And finally, two White-winged Doves were observed in Bluff late this afternoon. They were spotted in the same place as the lone dove I observed in October, making me wonder if perhaps these are resident birds.

Lu Giddings (20 Dec 2005) - At about 12 p.m. on Monday December 19th a pair of Barrow's Goldeneyes were seen on Ken's Lake. One bird was male and the other was female. They were keeping company with about a dozen common goldeneyes at the south end of the lake... For those of you wondering where in the devil Ken's Lake is, it can be found about 8 miles south southeast of Moab. ...A Northern Saw-whet Owl was seen just inside the Devil's Campground gate at about 7 p.m. this evening. A second northern saw-whet owl was heard near the inlet of Lloyd's lake, and a pair of great-horned owls was observed. Devil's Canyon campground is closed for the season but may be found about 12 miles south of Monticello on Highway 191. Lloyd's Lake can be found by following 200 South west out of Monticello and then following the signs. It's about two miles south of town.

Nov 2005

Jim Hook saw a Brown Thrasher on the 20th and 21st of November in Bluff (San Juan Co.) A picture has been posted on the "Hotline Photo" page: http://utahbirds.org/hotlinephotos/index.html

Oct 2005

Lu Giddings (8 Oct 2005) - A White-winged Dove was seen yesterday at about 5 p.m. in Bluff. Eurasian Collared-Doves were very nearly abundant yesterday. One was seen in Monticello at about 8 a.m., seven were seen in Bluff at about 5 p.m., and eight were seen in Blanding at about 6:45 p.m. Perhaps the Monticello bird and the Bluff birds got together for some dinner and a movie?

Lu Giddings (6 Oct 2005) - An American Golden-plover was seen late this evening in the wetlands that straddle Hickman Flats road (San Juan county road #332) about 12 miles northeast of Monticello. It was observed for nearly 30 minutes feeding by itself in an inundated field about 50 yards south of the road. It was in non-breeding plumage.

May 2005

Chuck LaRue - On Saturday 7 may 2005, at 1500h MST, we had an adult alternant plumage Harris's Sparrow at the big fenced off BLM petroglyph panel at Sand Island along the San Juan River below Bluff in San Juan County in extreme SE Utah. It was in the greasewood thicket at and just east of the panel. Point blank scope views were had as the bird was quite confiding.

Apr 2005

Mark Stackhouse - On Friday, April 22, we had a male Indigo Bunting at the Sand Island Campground near Bluff, at about 1 pm. It was near the petroglyph panel. Also, in the morning on Saturday, there was a male Williamson's Sapsucker at the Devil's Canyon Campground, and a Northern Pygmy-Owl, among all the usual suspects.

Joel and Kathy Beyer (17 April 2005) - Lots of nice birds in southeastern Utah this weekend, including: ...northeast of Monticello - 4 displaying Gunnison Sage Grouse...

Mar 2005

Earl Bolton (28 Mar 2005) - [Eurasian Collared-Dove] At a feeder in Bluff... (two adults).

Oct 2004

Leslie Loeffel - On Friday afternoon, Oct. 15, a Varied Thrush was seen in the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park. The bird was either a female or a juvenile; it had a partial breast band and white under the tail and halfway up the belly... David Deutch and Leslie Loeffel observed the bird hopping in the road on the Salt Creek Road 2.7 miles from the gate. (This is a 4WD drive road which requires a backcountry permit to enter.)...

Nick & Marian Eason - ...Audrey & Bill Evoy...a couple from Ontario who spent a couple of months here and are avid birders. I received an email from Audrey saying they had sited a Lawrence's Goldfinch at Hovenweep NM on October 7. She report they were only about 9 yards away from it and saw it in good light...

Jul 2004

Alex Burciaga (8 July 2004) - the devil's canyon Acorn Woodpeckers are easily seen (easier to hear the noisy buggers) in the small side draw 50 yards south of devil's canyon on hwy 191. they have been seen there the last two months when i have been surveying for lewis's woodpeckers...

Mar 2004

Dana Green ...I got to bird in Devils Cnayon CG last Sat. the 20th for a couple of hours and found a pair of Eastern Bluebirds. I was there quite early...

Mark Stackhouse (19 March 2004) - Sorry that this is a bit late, but I just got back from a tour to see the Gunnison Sage-Grouse (already 6 males on a lek ENE of Monticello). The most unusual birds we saw were a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker at Devil's Canyon Campground south of Monticello and a Golden-crowned Sparrow at the Blanding sewage treatment ponds. The sapsucker was along the self-guided nature trail (at stop 12, but it was moving around the area) at the very end of the left-hand fork (from the entrance) of the campground road. It's a first-year female, and as such is easy to recognize and separate from Red-naped Sapsucker (also in the area). ... The Golden-crowned Sparrow was an immature bird in a flock of White-crowned Sparrows in the brush along the east side of the sewage ponds about a mile south of Blanding on US 191.

July 2003

Bob Bradley of Grand Junction, CO - (23 July 2003) For those traveling in SE UT, this is to advise that the Acorn Woodpecker previously reported along US191 near Devil's Canyon CG S of Monticello is still around. I saw it on 7/23 at MP 60.6 perched on a ponderosa snag, E of highway.

May 2003

Andrew Spencer - Centennial, CO - Yesterday (May 27th), Nathan Pieplow and I found a White-rumped Sandpiper and a molting female Red Phalarope at the sewage ponds just south of Blanding...

Brian D Maxfield - A Common Black-Hawk was observed (5-9-03) along Verdure Creek southeast of Monticello. It was observed near the LDS church property. It was perched along the creek near a small pond (UTM Coordinates 639788 4183160). The area is mainly Ponderosa Pine mixed with aspen. It was observed by four different people and we were able to get good looks of the bird both perched and flying.  The Acorn Woodpecker was seen in the usual spot where US 191 crosses Devil Canyon.

Apr 2003

chrosh@earthlink.net - (Tuesday, April 22, 2003)  Calling Mexican Spotted Owl @ Needles Outpost campsite. 9:30pm April 20. Needles Outpost is a privately owned campsite and store directly outside of the entrance of Canyonlands NP, Needles District. Bird heard for about 5 minutes. Left early the following morning so was not able to check at nearby Canyonlands NP visitor's center to see if anybody else has heard it.

August 2002

Chuck LaRue (Arizona) - On 13 August 2002 an adult male HERMIT WARBLER was seen at the 10,100ft elevation level on the road up Navajo Mountain in San Juan County.  This was within about 0.25 mile of the radio towers on the summit.  It was examined closely for 15 minutes to as close as 20 ft for characters indicating hybridization with Townsend's Warbler and it showed pure Hermit traits.

July 2002

Damian Fagan -  Recent (July 12-14th, 2002) bird sightings from the Moab (Grand County) area: American White Pelican (14th), White-winged Dove (14th), and Double-Crested Cormorant (12th). The pelican and cormorant were in the
Colorado River in the vicinity of the Atlas Minerals Site and the white-winged dove was about 1/8 mile from the border of the Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve at a feeder.

June 2001

Damian Fagan - June 10th, just west of Newspaper Rock (along highway 211 to the Needles District of Canyonlands Nat. Park, San Juan County), male and female Summer Tanagers in the cottonwood groves. Numerous yellow and Virginia's warblers, warbling vireos, and a few yellow-breasted chats. June 11th in North Cottonwood Canyon, just south and west of Dugout Ranch (also along highway 211), a pair of Lucy's Warblers.

Scott Seltman (Nekoma, KS) - Last Sunday, 26 May, a large group of birders attending the Durango meeting of the Colorado Field Ornithologists wandered over into extreme SE Utah. We found a Greater Roadrunner sitting atop a tree adjacent to the Hovenweep HQ parking lot just w. of the CO/UT line. It was "cooing" periodically, was holding a dead lizard [unknown species] in its beak and sat there "displaying" for over one hour. It was seen again by a second fieldtrip the following day.

May 2001

Sid Hatch - On the trip to Southern Utah, while at Wild Horse Canyon, I saw a Broad Billed Hummingbird. It came around right in front of me and hovered at about a foot and a half in front of my nose. It had a very bright, beautiful blue throat, unlike anything I've ever seen. Also, a dark green body and lighter colored bill. The only other possibility would be a Blue Throated Hummingbird. However, these are even more rare than the Broad Billed and do not have the light colored bill.

November 2001

An apparent BROWN-CAPPED ROSY-FINCH was seen just north of Monticello on Friday, 11/23 (TB). It was feeding with some juncos among old sunflowers along the roadside of  Spring Creek Rd., about 0.5 miles west of the Monticello airport. If accepted, this will be the first record of Brown-capped Rosy-Finch in Utah

A GUNNISON SAGE-GROUSE was seen about 3 miles east of the Monticello Airport on Friday, 11/23 (TB).

A NORTHERN SHRIKE was seen just north of Devil's Canyon, about 10 miles south of Monticello, on Sunday, 11/11 (J&KB).

A MERLIN was seen at Recapture Reservoir between Monticello and Blanding on Monday, 11/05 (MS,LW).

September 2001

At Upper Bald Mesa in the La Sal Mountains southeast of Moab, several TOWNSEND'S WARBLERS were seen on Saturday, 09/15 (DF).

April 2001

A lone ACORN WOODPECKER was seen at Devil's Canyon on Tuesday, 04/17 (MS,v.o.). The bird was seen in the trees along the east side of the highway on the south side of the canyon. This has been a good location for this species in recent years, however, reports have been much less frequent for the past two years.

A MYRTLE-type YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER was seen at the Hatch Trading Post southeast of Blanding on Saturday, 04/07 (DW,v.o.).

March 2001

An EASTERN PHOEBE was seen at the Hatch Trading Post southeast of Blanding on Saturday, 03/31 (MS,DW). The bird was in the trees across the road from the store.

September 2000  

A female or immature male AMERICAN REDSTART was seen along Pack Creek, southeast of Moab, just below the bridge, on Friday, 09/22 (DS,m.ob.).

An immature PAINTED BUNTING was seen and photographed at the Pack Creek Ranch, southeast of Moab, on the afternoon of Thursday, 09/07 (MK). Pack Creek Ranch is located along the La Sal Mountain Road. For specific directions to where the bird was seen, call Ron at (435) 259-5505. This is the third report of Painted Bunting in Utah.

March 2000

On Saturday, 03/18, 10 GUNNISON SAGE GROUSE and several SAGE SPARROWS were seen on private land at Hickman Flats, about 15 miles northeast of Monticello. On the same day, a LINCOLN'S SPARROW was seen at the Hatch Trading Post near Hovenweep NM (MS,YS,DW,others).

Birds seen at Devil's Canyon, between Monticello and Blanding, on Sunday, 03/19, included WILLIAMSON'S SAPSUCKER, WESTERN BLUEBIRD, MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD, RED CROSSBILL and EVENING GROSBEAK (MS,YS,others).

January 2000

An apparent CANYON TOWHEE was seen at the Hatch Trading Post southeast of Blanding on Friday, 01/07 (DG). The bird was seen in the brush along the fence on the west side of the parking area. Hatch Trading Post is located on Hovenweep Road, which leads to Hovenweep NM. To get there, take US 191 south from Blanding to SR 262, and turn east. Follow the signs to Hovenweep NM until you get to Hatch Trading Post, about 14 miles east of US 191. If confirmed, this would be the first record of Canyon Towhee in Utah.

The CANYON TOWHEE which was first seen at the Hatch Trading Post, southeast of Blanding, two weeks ago was seen again on Wednesday, 1/12. The bird was again seen in the brush along the fence on the west side of the parking area with a flock of White-crowned Sparrows (TS). Hatch Trading Post is located about 14 miles east of US 191 on Hovenweep Road which leads to Hovenweep National Monument. Please respect the owner's wishes by only birding outside the perimeter of Hatch Trading Post property.

November 1999

Over 20 LEWIS'S WOODPECKERS were seen along a county road east of Monticello, as reported on Monday, 11/29 (TB). The birds were seen along CR 335, which goes east from US 666 at the KOA campground east of Monticello.

August 1999

A female LARK BUNTING was seen at Hickman Flat on Monday, 08/30 (MS). Hickman Flat is located about 12 miles northeast of Monticello (Utah Delorme 31, D-5). To get there, go north from Monticello on US 191 for about 5 miles to CR 332 (Hickman Flat Rd.), and go east about 10 miles.

At Devil Canyon, five ACORN WOODPECKERS were seen on Sunday, 08/29 (J&KB). Acorn Woodpeckers and a NASHVILLE WARBLER were seen there on Monday, 08/30 (MS). The birds were seen where US 191 crosses the canyon, about 10 miles south of Monticello.

A CASSIN'S KINGBIRD was seen along the highway to the Needles District of Canyonlands NP on Sunday, 08/29 (J&KB).

.

   

Return to the Utah Birds Home Page