I suck at birding but being in the field engaging with the world of our feathered friends is quite the experience. So come with me on Everyday Expedition(series) as we go “Birding in the Bosque.”You might think these trips are filled with excitement and awe, and to some degree they are, but for me, these trips are mostly about relief. Relief of being away from the tentacles of the digital world and general responsibilities of life.
This trip is something I do annually but always on an abridged schedule. On this trip, I got two hours at sunset and two hours at sunrise before I was back on the road. And I think this is what this series is about. Do what you can with what you have. Time, assets, experience. (First Episode on Shifter.)
The Bosque del Apache is a preserve roughly two and a half hours south of Santa Fe where Sandhill Cranes roost for the winter. Not all but many, many, many. These birds are a cross between beauty and the most gangly teenager you have ever seen, sometimes gliding in for a smooth landing while at other times dropping like helicopters. And surrounding the cranes are tens of thousands of other birds. Geese, raptors, songbirds, and more.
This year, two things were apparent. The temperatures were well above normal and the water levels were well below. Want a snapshot of the future of New Mexico, well, there you go. Consequently, we and the birds had to adapt to current conditions. I went with my fancy, two-gun rig while trading off with my wife. (Not a good strategy.) Several birding workshops were in operation as well as a Canon live film session. But vast tracts of the park were entirely empty and just to my liking.