Birding Middle Concho Park and Spring Creek Park


You have heard me tell you several times how much Ann and I enjoy going to Middle Concho Park, and it’s sister park, Spring Creek Park across the river.  It seems that there is always a chance to see something different.  Of course, that is because of the changing seasons, different birds are there at different times of the year.  There are over 380 species of birds that can be seen in the Concho valley,  and I dare say that most of them can be seen at these parks, at one time or another, depending when you happen to visit.   You may get lucky and spot one of the Horned Owls like the one pictured below.

Great Horned Owl

We spotted this owl high in a tree in Spring Creek Park.  There was a lady nearby, walking a small dog, unaware of what was perched above her head.  She laughed when we told her why I was pointing my camera up there.

Belted Kingfisher

This Belted Kingfisher was cavorting along the river and finally lit on a power line that crosses the water.  Nervously, I hurriedly set my Canon 7D with 500mm lens with a 1.4 tele-converter on my drivers side window sill and got the shot before it flew off looking for another place to fish.

Great Egret

On another day we saw several Great Egrets.  This one was across the river and I was able to get the shot.  Another wading bird that you can see almost every day of the year, is the Great Blue Heron like the one pictured below.

Great Blue Heron

The Osprey is another bird that thrives on fish, and the catfish in these waters are one of his favorites.  Here one sits on a tree branch enjoying his dinner.

Osprey enjoying catfish dinner.

Another raptor that frequents these parks is the Red-tailed Hawk.  One morning Ann and I witnessed three of them.  Two were flying through the trees close together in Middle Concho Park, while the third was across the river perched high in a tree.  Watch out for low flying birds.

Red-tailed Hawk

Of course we can’t ignore the smaller birds, can we.  These parks teem with species like, Eastern Bluebirds, Robins, Warblers, etc.  Below is a Yellow-rumped Warbler.

Yellow-rumped Warbler

The best way to appreciate the birding here is to just drive very, very slow through the area.  Watch the treetops, watch for un-natural movement in the branches of the live oaks, use your binoculars, and listen.  Sometimes we come to a complete stop, and discover there are tiny birds all around us.  At least we can hear them or see the branches move.  We then put our binoculars to work to locate the source.

Eastern Bluebird

These two parks are maintained very well.  The grass is mowed on a regular basis and early in the week the park employees are always on the job picking up trash left over from the careless individuals that use the place on weekends.  They seem to not see the trash cans that are placed about forty feet apart all through the park.

Northern Cardinal

We find that the best time to do any birding is on the weekdays.  On any given day you literally may have the park all to yourself.  Have fun.  Click on any of these photos to see some nice enlargements.

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42 thoughts on “Birding Middle Concho Park and Spring Creek Park

  1. Those two parks have been good to you, Bob. I especially like the osprey shot for the clear view of the bird, nice background, interesting perch and, of course, the fish. I like reading about your shooting technique from your vehicle – reminds me so much of me… As for the unused trash cans, shame on those folks!

  2. I was in the middle of a comment early this morning and had to shut down before I finished. WOW! on that bluebird. For the first time here, we have been enjoy flocks of 10 or more bluebirds frolicking and insect-eating out by the creek. They are fly away at the mere sight of a human — I’ve been considering making myself a rolling camera BLIND!! Your car-stalking always gets me to thinking how I can finagle something…

    That bluebird photo would look great hanging on my wall. Just sayin. :)

  3. What a great selection of birds! I love the owl and the cardinal especially. I wish our own owls were that easy to see in the daytime! The Parks sound like superb places for birdwatching.

  4. OK Bob – I give up! I MUST see these two parks with my own eyes and camera. I must learn to search the branches and brush as you two do. I did get a pair of binoculars so with some practice those birds “out of sight” can no longer hide from me! Thanks for sharing such great photos of beautiful birds.
    hugs

    • Okay, Beth, here’s what we are gonna do. :-) In about three weeks when we get back from our trip, we and you are going to get together and we will show you how it’s done. Practice your binoculars and be ready. We’ll set the time and place to meet later. :-)

  5. AWESOME as always.

    I have tons of owls and hawks around here, the herons and egrets more some in the warmer months.
    It seems I have alot more Cardinals this year, I suppose those extra bird-feeders I bought a couple months ago and a half-way warm barn was to much to pass up.

  6. Love them all, but if I had to pick a favourite it would be the egret portrait. I love the shape and contrast of the gnarly branch. I have to comment on the trash too, though. How is it that although I remember “do not litter” commercials from when I was a child – 4 decades later, the problem is even worse?

  7. Wonderful photography as usual, Bob. I love both your pics and your dedication to birding. But most of all, I really appreciate you sharing your marvelous gift with the rest of us.

    All the best,

    Bruce

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