Wednesday, April 22, 2015

When the Ponds Recharge in Glendale

 I have been very fortunate as to make a couple of short birding trips to the Glendale Recharge Ponds in the last few days. During Spring and Fall migration these ponds hold an overwhelming amount of shorebirds, gulls and even terns. So with the possibility of finding something good, I didn't hesitate to answer the question on where to go birding. The main bird-talk that was going around in my home county (Maricopa) was a pair of Black-bellied Plovers that had been staying here at the ponds, and it wasn't very hard to locate not two but three of these beautiful plovers.

Black-bellied Plover 

There was also a one-day-wonder Red-breasted Merganser that I identified. He was hanging with his ruddy's not his peeps. RBME don't hang with peeps!

Red-breasted Merganser-1st winter male, note the dark green forehead

The impressive Snowy Egrets seemed to be showing off their awesomeness but the Great Horned Owls seemed unimpressed (like always).

Snowy Egret

Great Horned Owl- Adult on left fledgling on right

Throughout the short time that I observed the owls there was a European Starling that tried hard to make the owls brake.

European Starling

I felt somewhat bad for the starling as it got rejected by the owls, however the Neotropic Cormorants didn't help, as they ooh'd and heckled at the pore thing.

Neotropic Cormorant

Yes I know, by now you're thinking that the GRPs are a harsh place, well in some way they are (like nearly getting your car broken into) but take this family of Mallards for instance, they're making it through.

Mallard-11 babies!!!

The Glendale Recharge Ponds are an awesome place to bird especially during Spring and Fall migration. With the peak of shorebird-migration coming up in a week or two the birding listserve should be getting some pretty exciting reports. I must thank Mr. John Kafel, Mr. Joe Ford and Mr. Paul Doucett for making these two trips and this post possible! 


  1. Nice work Caleb. RBME is always a great bird in Maricopa, as is a tidy pile of BBPLs

  2. Neat photographs and post Caleb, keep up the good work in the field!

    1. Thanks, and thank you for stopping by Mr. Tommy!