Saturday, October 15, 2011

Cactus Wrens

A young Cactus Wren in the Sonoran Desert hasn't grown its buffy flank and belly feathers yet, Tuscon, AZ; 12/27/2009
Cactus Wrens (Above) are common in the desert. Almost every time I visit the Southwest, I see them. They can be found in the southern halves of Arizona and New Mexico, extreme South California and the Baja Peninsula, as well as the western half of Texas and into Mexico.
This Cactus Wren posing in the McDowell Mts. Regional Park, Phoenix, AZ;
Cactus Wrens are the largest of the North American Wren family growing to 8 1/2" in length; whereas, most of the other Wrens range from 4" to 6" in length. Their earth tone colors contrast beautifully from their reddish brown crown set off with a long white eyebrow, to their buffy belly and white breast which are spotted with dense dark brown markings. Their brown wings and tails are crisscrossed with white and darker markings almost like a checkerboard pattern.
Another look at a Cactus Wren in the McDowell Mt. Reg. Park, Phoenix, AZ; 12/30/2009.
Because of its size and noisy disposition, the Cactus Wren (Above) was so visible and creating so much noise with its rattling song (almost like a gigantic cicada sounding insect) that I totally didn't even see the Black-throated Sparrow that was perched directly below it in the same bush (Below) until I was viewing my photos later in the day.
The very visible Cactus Wren on the top of the bush takes the focus away from the smaller Black-throated Sparrow perched just below it, McDowell Mts., Phoenix, AZ; 12/30/2009.

1 comment:

~Val said...

We saw these in the zoo on Friday. I like them better in your photos in the wild.