PO Box 9021, Wilmington, DE 19809, USA
E-mail: font@focusonnature.com
Phone: Toll-free in USA 1-888-721-3555
 or 302/529-1876

 

A Focus On Nature Tour
in
ARIZONA

for Birds and Butterflies, 
and Other Nature


At some great places
in the mountains and the desert

During a great time of year for birds,
with breeders and some migrants


With numbers of Hummingbirds, 
Flycatchers, Warblers, Sparrows,
Hawks and Owls, 
and a Trogon.



August 23 - September 4, 2016


(tour: FON/AZ-3, '16)

Tour to be led by Armas Hill.

Links:

A Photo Gallery from a previous FONT Arizona Tour

Birds of Arizona - A List & Photo Gallery, in 2 parts:
Part #1: Quails to Becard     Part #2: Flycatchers to Buntings

Mammals of Arizona  (with some photos)

Amphibians & Reptiles of Arizona  (with some photos)

Butterflies and Dragonflies & Damselflies and Grasshoppers of Arizona  (with some photos)

Plants of the Desert & some nearby habitats (with some photos)   

Some Highlights of previous FONT tours in Arizona
  

Tour Registration Form




Black-chinned Hummingbird
(photo by Howard Eskin)

Itinerary:

Tue, Aug. 23, '15:  Arrival mid-day in Phoenix. Some afternoon birding in the Phoenix area, as time permits, at the Desert Botanical Garden, not far from the airport. If time does not permit, no need for concern, as we can visit that interesting place, good for birds and plants, later during the tour. Overnight in Phoenix.

Wed, Aug 24:  Travel, with birding along the way, from Phoenix north to Williams, west of Flagstaff. Williams is a "western town" along the famous Route 66, with still quite a flavor of that highway as it once was. Williams will also be our base from which we'll visit the Grand Canyon
Birds that we could see in northern Arizona, as we have during our previous tours, include: Clark's Grebe, Bald Eagle, Steller's Jay, Red Crossbill, Grace's Warbler, Yellow-headed Blackbird, and many Western Bluebirds.  Overnight in Williams.

Thu, Aug 25:  Most of this day will be at the Grand Canyon, where in addition to the spectacular scenery we will be in position, by the rim of the canyon, to see California Condors, either flying above us in the thermals or perched on a nearby cliff. Seeing this largest of North American birds, coming back from the brink of extinction, has been a highlight of our recent tours in Arizona. Also, this day, in the Grand Canyon area, of course other birds are to be seen. Among those, for us, in 2010, were Pinyon Jays, Juniper Titmouse, and Mountain Chickadees. Among the mammals, the Gunnison Prairie Dog, and possibly Elk. Overnight again in Williams.



The Grand Canyon (above).
The California Condor (below)
was photographed at the Grand Canyon
during the FONT tour there in August 2010. 



Fri, Aug 26:
 
Travel east, following pretty much the famous Route 66, toward Holbrook, which will be our base for what will be another interesting place to visit, the Painted Desert and the Petrified Forest National Park. During this day, during our 2010 tour, we enjoyed a wonderful look at a Prairie Falcon. Overnight in Holbrook. 



A photograph of the Painted Desert
taken during the FONT tour in August 2010. 


Sat, Aug 27:
 
We will have been to the Painted Desert late the previous day, until sunset, but we'll be back this morning to explore the area further. A nice number of birds should be seen, including raptors and ravens, as well as various mammals, including possibly Pronghorn, and some interesting butterflies and reptiles. After lunch, we'll travel south to Phoenix, where we will overnight.

Sun, Aug 28:  In the morning, a visit to the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, a truly wonderful place to be in the morning. Among the birds we've seen there during our previous tours have been LeConte's Thrasher and Abert's Towhee. Mid-day, we'll travel south to Tucson
In the afternoon, we'll do some birding near Tucson in the area of Mt. Lemmon. Possibilities include: Zone-tailed Hawk, Acorn Woodpecker, Pygmy Nuthatch, Mountain Chickadee, Red-faced, Olive, and Grace's Warblers. Overnight in the Tucson area.

Mon, Aug. 29:  Early morning desert birding, near Tucson, among the giant Saguaro Cactus for species such as: Curve-billed Thrasher, Gambel's Quail, Black-tailed Gnatcatcher, Gila and Ladder-backed Woodpeckers, Verdin, and Cactus Wren. Followed by a visit to the famous Sonoran Desert Museum, where the nature of the desert is presented in natural settings, and there are good photographic opportunities.



Cactus Wrens, during a previous FONT Tour in Arizona
(photo by Doris Potter)

Next, our Arizona journey continues as we head toward Patagonia, a good birding area east of the Santa Rita Mountains. We'll travel through the north edge of those mountains, birding along the way, in and near the Madera Canyon. 
Upon our arrival in Patagonia, we'll do some afternoon birding along the Sonoita Creek, including a place that's good for hummingbirds: maybe Violet-crowned, Costa's, and Rufous
At the Sonoita Creek Sanctuary there can be: Gray Hawk, Gila Woodpecker, and Northern Beardless Tyrannulet. Overnight in Patagonia.

Tue, Aug. 30:  Much of this day at the Ramsey, Ash, and Miller Canyons, where Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher and Black-throated Gray Warbler can be among the birds we'll see. Among the mammals we could see this day: the Coati.
And a lot of hummingbirds! At hummingbird feeders there can be about a dozen species of hummingbirds. Among those we should see: the Magnificent and the Blue-throated. Among those possible: the White-eared and the Berylline. At one of the places we'll visit, the Lucifer Hummingbird is usually seen. Overnight in the Sierra Vista area. 

An immature Broad-tailed Hummingbird 
photographed during a FONT Arizona tour 



Violet-crowned Hummingbird at its nest,
also photographed during a FONT Arizona tour

Wed, Aug. 31:  Travel to Portal, with birding enroute. Along the way, at places such as the valley of the San Pedro River, we could encounter birds such as: Abert's Towhee, Scott's Oriole, Greater Roadrunner, Scaled Quail, and Lark Sparrow. Overnight in Portal, at the entrance to Cave Creek Canyon.

Thu, Sep. 1:  Much of the day, birding in the highlands, but before that, some birding at a slightly lower elevation where the Crissal Thrasher will be sought. 
In the highlands of the Chiricahua Mountains, Elegant Trogon, Mexican Chickadee, Hepatic Tanager, Olive Warbler, Painted Redstart, and Red-faced Warbler all occur. And all of them amid spectacular scenery. 
It's some of the best birding in the U.S., in one of the most beautiful settings. 
If we're fortunate, after dark, we could hear (and maybe see) the Flammulated Owl. And if we're also fortunate, earlier during the day, we may find the Montezuma Quail, as we have during our tours here in the past. 
Overnight, again, at Portal.

Fri, Sep. 2:  Another morning of birding in the area of the Chiricahuas, including along Paradise Road where there could be yet more birds including Black-chinned Sparrow and Juniper Titmouse.
Later in the day, we'll make a birding stop at Wilcox, where, at a small lake, birds could include: Eared Grebe, White-faced Ibis, Cinnamon Teal, Long-billed Curlew, and Black Tern, along with an assortment of shorebirds, waterfowl, herons, of various sorts. 
From Willcox, we'll travel west toward Tucson. We'll spend the night south of Tucson in Green Valley.

Sat, Sep. 3:  This morning will be at the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, near Arivaca, southwest of Green Valley. The morning birding there should be good. Afterwards, we'll visit Kitt's Peak, where there's an astronomical observatory atop a mountain surrounded by the Tohano Oˇdam Indian lands. In the afternoon, we'll head north to Phoenix, where we'll spend the night.      

Sun, Sep. 4:  Departure from Phoenix for home. 

Tour Price: $2,395 per person (based upon double occupancy).

Single supplement: $295.

Includes: All accommodations and transportation. Services of an expert birding leader. Breakfasts and lunches Aug. 24 - Sep. 3. 

Does not include: Transportation to/from Phoenix, AZ., dinners, items of a personal nature, gratuities.

A deposit of $500 is required to register for this tour.