One thing I have noticed over the years of hiking, is that there are always birds along for each journey. I have here recently started bird watching and beginning to discover the adventures bird watchers go through while trying to capture that rare view. And according to the National Geographic I am not in a “birding hotspot” but oh well, I plan on capturing some birds of the west while I am here. I am sure to travel more in my life and capture more species. As my first post on birds, I was hiking pine creek in Red Rock Canyon, when I come across this beautiful blue bird resting in the tree top. In one of the photos you can see the wind ruffing his feathers. I break out my field guide to birds that I just bought and discovered we was looking at a Western Scrub Jay. While this is a common bird, seen throughout most of the west, the scrub jay’s have close relatives that live in other parts of the country like the Florida Scrub Jay which is found in Florida.
National Geographic Field guide definition:
Western Scrub Jay – Long tail; blue above; variable blueish band on chest. Coastal races, including nominate californica, deeper blue above; contrasting brown patch; distinct white eyebrow and blue breast band; undertail coverts geographically variable; may or may not be bluish. Tame and widespread; found in urban areas. Interior billed nevadae of Great Basin to bluer, stouter-billed texana; slender billed woodhouseii is intermediate in color. Interior races rather shy; inhabit lower mountain woodland. All U.S. subspecies hold individual territories. Calls include raspy shreep, often in a short series.
Hiking in Red Rock you are almost guaranteed to see other wildlife if you look closely enough. Wild burros graze the lands, bighorns rule the canyon walls, lizards scurrying about, rabbits jumping around, etc. The wildlife is abundant but you just have to have a keen eye and patience to catch it.