Birds

Aplonis metallica metallica or Metallic Starling

Native to Moluccas, Sula Is. and Aru Is. to New Guinea and NE Queensland. Long-tailed, dark songbird. Adults glossy blackish with strong metallic green-blue sheen above in good light, bright red eye. Immatures dark above, pale with short, dark streaks below. Nest in large colonies, typically seen in very large flocks that fly fast and low. Inhabits forests, parks, gardens.

Vanellus miles or
Masked Lapwing

Large, common and conspicuous bird native to Australia, particularly the northern and eastern parts of the continent, New Zealand and New Guinea.

Buceros rhinoceros or Rhinoceros Hornbill

Found in Borneo, Sumatra, Java, the Malay Peninsula, Singapore, and southern Thailand.

Bucorvus leadbeateri or Southern gound hornbill

This bird was part of a show at the Phoenix zoo. Grandson Jay, was right up next to the elevated stage and the bird reached out and pecked at his face. The crew was now very worried and made sure that there was not going to be any litigation. Jay was scared but fine. Still has all his ears, nose and eyes. I was scared too but didn't cry (much). This guy makes a living at eating flesh every day. I am sure from now on there will be changes with the Phoenix zoo show.

Balearica regulorum gibbericeps or Grey Crowned Crane


Quiscalus mexicanus or Great-Tailed Grackle Female

Great-tailed Grackles are partial to water and so without the expanses of watered landscapes and agricultural fields these birds would be rare in the Sonoran Desert. One common foraging tactic they use is to catch worms and bugs that are forced out of the soil during irrigation. But these are very adaptable birds that can adjust their tactics to take advantage of human-altered habitat. For example, at dawn every day they gather to feed on grasshoppers and other insects beneath parking area and billboard flood lights. Garbage cans and scraps from outside restaurant areas are another important food source for urban grackles. Dairy cattle feed lots attract hundreds if not thousands of these birds. http://www.arizonensis.org/sonoran/fieldguide/vertibrata/quiscalus_mexicanus.html

Chilean Flamingo or Phoenicopterus chilensis

Phx Zoo

white-winged Morning Dove or Zenaida asiatica

Feeding on the fruit of a Trichosereus spachiana or Golden Torch Cereus plant.

This mourning dove is common in Southwestern United States, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. They are large for doves, with a white edge on their wings. Their call sounds similar to the English phrase "who cooks for you".

They nest in residential trees and native cactus plants. They eat mostly grains, but also includes pollen and nectar, especially from the saguaro cactus. They also love eating my garden tomatoes.

It is hunted for food and sport, being the second most game bird in the United States.