Author Archives: Bob

About Bob

A lifelong naturalist, Bob's avocation is birding, including field observation, study, photography and writing. He spent a career in computers and consulting, but his free time has been spent outdoors backpacking, fishing and enjoying nature firsthand. Bob has traveled extensively, exploring and photographing above and underwater in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Egypt and throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America. Now retired, as an amateur ornithologist Bob studies, photographs and writes primarily about birds of the Western Hemisphere. Formerly the Feature Writer for Latin America and Caribbean Travel at Suite101.com, he has been Suite101's Feature Writer for Birds and Birding since January, 2010, and has received seven Editor's Choice awards, which are listed below. Bob also writes a monthly birding column for a newspaper in Arizona, and his work appears in the travel magazine, Another Day in Paradise, published in Zihuatanejo, Mexico. His blog, Birding the 'Brooke and Beyond, discusses birding, travel and other topics in Southeast Arizona and beyond. Bob is a member of the National and Tucson Audubon Societies, Western Field Ornithologists, Arizona Field Ornithologists, the American Birding Association and other birding and conservation organizations. Bob and his wife, Prudy, live in the Santa Catalina Mountain foothills near Tucson, Arizona. To date, Bob has received Suite101 Editor's Choice awards for the following articles: • Birding by Cruise Ship in the Caribbean • The Xantus' Hummingbird, Baja California's Only Endemic Hummer • Birding the White Mountains in and Around Greer, Arizona • The Greater Roadrunner, New Mexico's State Bird • Where to Find Steelhead on the Lower Deschutes River in Oregon • Birding La Bajada near San Blas, Mexico • The 2008 Christmas Bird Count at Estero del Yugo in Mazatlan

The Howdy Birds

As a family of birds, owls are unique and fascinating.  They are nocturnal predators with large night-vision eyes, stealth-silent wings and sharp beaks and talons.  No wonder they have fostered myths and folklore. Owls range in size from 5.5 inches … Continue reading

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The Christmas Bird Count

This year will mark the 121st consecutive year that the annual ‘Christmas’ Bird Count takes place.  As you might imagine, the count has changed a lot in 121 years.  Although the first count happened on Christmas Day in 1900, and … Continue reading

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Birding in the Time of Covid

We recently decided to take a multi-night birding trip and considering COVID, the planning seemed to take as long as the trip.  We planned an twelve-night loop trip, with stays in four separate AirB&Bs. We picked places that were highly … Continue reading

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The Eared Quetzal

Although I’ve always loved birds, I didn’t get seriously into birding until January, 2008, when we took a multi-month road trip into Mexico.  One of many highlights on that trip was a two-night campout in Reserva Monte Mojino, a private … Continue reading

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Birding the Big Island

Being mostly quarantined for months, I catch myself thinking about exotic places we’ve traveled, like Australia, Colombia, Cuba and Hawaii.  I’ve written about many of these places but never about Hawaii.  We’ve spent many days on most of Hawaii’s islands, … Continue reading

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Lucy’s Warbler

Compared with some other states, bird-rich Arizona comes up short when you look at nesting warblers. There are about fifty members of the wood warbler family in North America, and only eleven of these nest in Arizona.  Nevertheless, we have … Continue reading

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Arizona’s Wrens

Wrens are one of my favorite bird families.  For the most part, wrens are small, fairly uncommon, active and melodious. A major exception to this set of characteristics is our state bird, the Cactus Wren, who is large by wren … Continue reading

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Baby Birds

Fortunately for birders, the massive upheaval of a worldwide pandemic doesn’t rate as significant a problem as it might for those with more sociable pastimes.  We spend a lot of time on our own, anyway, looking for, finding and photographing … Continue reading

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Landscaping with Wildflowers

An article in last month’s Saddlebag Notes claimed that wildflowers are “VERY invasive” and inappropriate for the cultivated yards of SaddleBrooke.  Admitting that California poppies are pretty, the author warned they would “move next door and beyond without permission!” She … Continue reading

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Arizona’s Woodpeckers

There are approximately 10,000 species of birds in the world, and any traveler interested in birds knows that you will find them in every continent and every country, with an incredible diversity from place to place no matter where you … Continue reading

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