Southern Utah Birding

We recently went on a wonderful trip to southern Utah (Zion/Bryce Canyon/Cedar Breaks) and I was lucky enough to photograph some birds. All the photographs were shot on an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III with Zuiko glass and processed on Lightroom (iOS). Here are seven bird photographs and a random factoid thanks to the Cornell Lab’s All About Birds Guide

1. White-Crowned Sparrow

IMG_0057.JPG

Zonotrichia leucophrys: Males & females form pairs at breeding grounds during summer & fly their separate ways when winter arrives. Two-thirds of the same couples re-form the next year! 

2. Black-chinned Hummingbird

IMG_0059.JPG

Archilochus alexandri: The oldest known specimen is a female identified in Texas and was documented to be a whopping 11 years old!

3. White-breasted Nuthatch

IMG_0056.JPG

Sitta carolinensis: Seen here in its namesake pose, the nuthatch “hatches” seeds from inside nuts by whacking them against the bark.

4. Blue Grosbeak

IMG_0060.JPG

Passerina caerulea: They feed insects to their nestlings but ONLY after removing the head, wings, and the legs!

5. Steller’s Jay

IMG_0058.JPG

Cyanocitta stelleri: They are named after naturalist Georg Steller, and are not “Stellar” Jays, a frequent misspelling (guilty!)

6. Rock Wren

IMG_0061.JPG

Salpinctes obsoletus: There are more than a hundred different song types documented for this species!

7. Spotted Owl

IMG_0062.JPG

Strix occidentalis: There are three different subspecies (this one is a Mexican Spotted Owl) and the oldest recorded individual was a 21-year old female!