As you may have read in past issues, we have made it a priority in our lives to venture outdoors more often with our daughter, Paloma. We have been taking her camping, hiking, and birdwatching. Recently the three of us have had some interesting nature excursions to Madera Canyon and Ramsey Canyon as well as in some urban locations such as Agua Caliente Park and Lincoln Park. Every outing was unique and successful in bringing us in touch with the outdoors and the birds. Our sightings included Elegant Trogons, Arizona Woodpeckers, Magnificent Hummingbird, nesting Great Horned Owls with owlets, several species of warblers and sparrows, just to name a few. Little by little, as she watches us bird, she’s become more interested in the birdwatching part of our excursions. She has now started a birding club in her second grade class. Of course we were delighted and inspired by this. Taking a page from her book, we are going to try starting a Wild Bird Store birding club for our customers and friends.
Our idea is to make a completely non-competitive, friendly environment to enjoy watching birds. All skill levels are welcome, although there will be an emphasis on beginners. Along the way, we’ll discuss how to identify species based on physical features, behaviors, habitat, etc. in order to help new birders. Birders with more experience are encouraged to share their expertise with less experienced birders. This is a perfect opportunity for people who are primarily backyard birders to experience the broader world of birding in nature. Birding in the great outdoors provides you with the opportunity to view a wider variety of species than you would experience in your backyard.
This club will be 100% free, however, we will require you to sign a waiver of liability. The only things necessary to participate are a field guide and binoculars.
Our first excursion will be Sunday, May 29. We are planning on meeting at Sweetwater Wetlands at 7 am. Please leave small children and dogs at home and wear appropriate clothing and shoes. If you would like to participate or have questions, please email us your contact info at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Bird Club” in the subject line and we will keep you up to date on Bird Club activity.
We hope to see you there!
-Justin and Clarisa
It's Spring time! There are lots of baby birds out there, following mama around, adding an unprecedented level of cuteness to our backyards perfectly coinciding with Mother's Day. In honor of our mothers and yours, we are opening up our discount club specials to everyone until Mother's Day. Feel free to take advantage of these discounts or tell a friend. This is for in store sales only and does not apply to web sales. Check out our specials this month, which include jewelry and other great gifts for mom. From the Wild Bird Store family to yours, Happy Mother's Day!
Confessions From Camp
Trickle of a stream
Huachuca Mountains, USA
Take the Arizona Trail
To the American Robin
Sit and Wait
The hooting and hollering
Of my daughter
A desert child
Dances through the forest
Waking me from a lovely trance
The crush of humanity can wait
A world away
Just down the road
Ordinary world be damned
Give me the Bridled Titmouse
BIRDWALKS WITH MATT NORRIS
With spring comes migration and with migration comes a new array of species here in Southeast Arizona.
I am giving a public BirdWalk to Madera Canyon on Sunday the 17th and also on Sunday the 24th. These walks are $25 a person and these walks are limited to 10 people per walk so register early to ensure a spot. Waiver of liability must be signed and Method of payment must be paid before day of walk.
Matt is in the store on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. For more specific details (times, meeting place, trip travel, etc.) about Matt's BirdWalk please contact him directly via email (Norbird84@gmail.com), his work cell (5208692828) or via the Wild Bird Store (5203229466).
Target Species include but not limited to:
Birding in Alaska Slideshow
We have added an article about our August trip to Alaska---Birding in Alaska with a slideshow.
Zhangli Bu is a Chinese national who is a junior at the U of A studying journalism. Her family resides in China and she intends to make a career in journalism. Like many 22 year olds, she enjoys mucic, traveling and reading. She approached me at the store asking for permission to make a video about our business and how the business evolved. This is the result of her effort
On October 11, 2011 I was invited to do an interview on “the Jolt”, AM 1330. The show Ron Asta’s Tucson gave us a digital recording of the interview. The show runs about 36:36 minutes long. We didn’t get through all the talking points we wanted to so I’ve been asked to return for a second interview sometime in the near future. We’ll keep you posted. We did have a great conversation about the nectar eating bats that are unique to our area and a little about birding. The next conversation will focus more on the wonderful birds we experience here.
The Wild Bird Store has moved to 3160 East Fort Lowell Road, on the southeast corner of Country Club Blvd. and Ft. Lowell Road – in the Winterhaven Square. After two decades, we are beginning a new chapter in our efforts to aid and educate birding enthusiasts in a...
THE WILD BIRD STORE
Located in Tucson, Arizona and begun in 1992 as a true mom and pop business, has a strong regional
reputation as an independent wild bird store featuring our line of innovative
and unique wild bird products. Our loyal customer base depends on us for
quality products, expert advice and dedicated customer service.
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no longer have to wait at the periphery of the yard for the feeding frenzy
to quiet down before coming to the feeder. Now, with this feeder for their exclusive use, they can feed undisturbed from sunrise to
sunset. This weight-activated feeder will accommodate the entire cardinal
family - from fledglings to adults. All other birds both heavier and lighter
NUTS 'N' BUGS
If you had to choose just one food for birds, one they would not only
survive on, but actually thrive on, Nuts 'n'
Bugs is it! Created from a recipe of ground pecans and dehydrated
insects (over 1,000 per pound), it has calcium, soybean meal, and rendered
suet to bring in insect and nut eating birds. With Nuts
'n' Bugs you can attract a wide variety of insect eating
birds- many of which are not attracted to seeds.
GOLDFINCHES IN SOUTHEAST ARIZONA
Photo by Richard at SearchNet Media
Southeastern Arizona birders have experienced a phenomenal increase in the numbers of goldfinches that can be attracted to our backyard birding stations.
Twenty years ago and more, it took us months to attract our first goldfinches. Patience, we reminded ourselves as we did our customers, is the number one rule for birders.
The preferred food for the intended species and the right feeder to deliver that food is number two. Understanding these principles will always reward us and the birds.
Nyjer seed, unlike true thistle, is the preferred choice of seed for all the goldfinch species. Most other species in our area will reject Nyjer for almost any other seed that is easily available and accessible. Almost any design of thistle feeder filled with Nyjer seed will attract mostly goldfinches. The feeder models that have food ports under the perches are species specific to goldfinches.
BIRDS, WATER AND SUMMER HEAT
Cooper's Hawk by Richard at SearchNetMedia
In our desert heat, we are stating the obvious - birds need clean reliable water sources all year round, but no more than when the temperature soars. As we write this, the projected heat for this afternoon is 113°F, and likely to remain in the triple digits for the rest of the week. As the drought deepens in southern Arizona, natural water sources continue to dry up. Our record setting fire season has taken its toll on the wildlife. Birds pant and hold their wings out from their bodies in an attempt to keep cool. Supplying a water source for the birds is of great assistance to them and the necessity of clean fresh water cannot be underestimated.
Of course, you want to do this in a way that does no harm - no drowning, no disease transmission, no increase in predation, no harm what-so-ever. Here's what you need to know about bird baths and other water features to help the birds, without harming them.
HOW TO INCREASE BACKYARD DIVERSITY
Photo by Richard at SearchNet Media
With more species of birds than almost any other region in the country, Southeastern Arizona's biodiversity offers backyard birders one of the best opportunities to attract a wide variety of birds.
The combined number of year-round resident and migrating birds that one can see in the cycle of a year's time is greater than most other regions throughout the continent. However, if you don't devote some time on a regular basis to observing, you may miss some of the migrants which only pass through our area and remain only for a relatively short time.
Southeastern Arizona is also an excellent place to notice quite a few rare and exotic species that migrate through or use our area in spring and summer as their traditional breeding territory.
With relatively little effort and expense, you can easily double and triple the number of species attracted to your feeding stations.
INTRODUCING A NEW CARDINAL FEEDER
We have become the exclusive authorized dealers in Arizona for a new species-specific cardinal feeder that serves as a less expensive version of the cedar wood model we pioneered about twenty years ago.
This model is constructed of tough polycarbonate material, can be hung or pole mounted, and is manufactured in Montreal, Canada by the Wild Bird Conservation Center. We have received our first shipment and we expect it to sell for around $60. While it was created for a cold, wet northern climate in that it is weather proof (keeps rain and snow out), it works perfectly well in our region as well. (Keeping seeds dry in Arizona isn’t too much of a concern).
So, for customers who wish for a more economical way to give cardinals, pyrrhuloxia and grosbeaks what they want most (our cardinal mix and a little exclusivity) this is the feeder you’ve been waiting for!
BASIC BINOCULAR KNOWLEDGE
Birders, whether the backyard or in-the-field- variety, need only two essential items as the basic tools for learning about bird identification and behavior - a good field guide and reliable binoculars. The Wild Bird Store carries the best field guide for our area. It is the new Birds of Southeastern Arizona by Richard Taylor and has established itself as our best selling identification guide since its publication late last year. With just these two things, you can teach yourself all you want to know about the birds of our specific region, or anywhere for that matter.
The Wild Bird Store offers a comprehensive selection of Vortex Binoculars
WILD BIRD STORE DISCOUNT CLUB
For almost twenty years we have offered our customers the opportunity of reducing costs on each and every purchase they make. The cost of annual dues is $16.00 ($1.25 per month). Discounts begin on the day a membership is activated and expires one full year from the last day of the month the membership begins.
HOW TO ATTRACT ORIOLES
Orioles are not as common or abundant as most of our year round resident birds. Yet, as a migratory species, they are reliably present from early spring to fall. We have had orioles at our station from as early as February until as late as early November.
Orioles (and their relatives, like the tanagers) have beautiful and strikingly colorful plumage, their exquisite and fluid songs, and their parenting and nesting abilities make them very desirable birds to attract and observe. The relatively small effort to attract and feed orioles rewards...