In March 2019, Maine Audubon, in association with Field Guides Birding Tours, made a trip to south-western Mexico in search of rare species that are unique to the Sierra Madre mountains area. Based in the beautiful colonial city of Oaxaca, known for great birds, authentic food, and amazing human history, the group explored many habitats including the semi-arid deserts near Teotitltán and the pine forests of La Cumbre at altitudes of up to almost 10000 feet.
Doug and Ken will report on the successful search for rare endemic species like Dwarf Jay, Gray-barred Wren, Mountain Trogon and Chestnut-sided Shrike-Vireo in the mountains as well as the Oaxaca Sparrow, Boucard’s Wren, Gray-breasted Woodpecker, and Dusky Hummingbird in the desert areas. Many other species were added to the list including flocks of Gray Silky-flycatcher, rare Ocellated Thrasher, and the beautiful Red Warbler.
The presentation will include a description of the city of Oaxaca and the surrounding area, home of the ancient pre-Columbian Zapotec culture. The group had a chance to explore the imposing ruins of Monte Albán and Mitla, learning about early indigenous people and their impressive engineering and architectural skills. We also had ample opportunity to watch local artisans weaving traditional tapestries and sample the world- famous cuisine. Where else can you watch Blue-throated Hummingbirds while enjoying a lunch of Aztec stew?
Doug Hitchcox is the Staff Naturalist at Maine Audubon and was one of the guides. Ken Janes is a Kennebunk resident and enthusiastic birder. Both are members of York County Audubon and serve on the Board of Directors.
The program will be held in the Mather Auditorium of the Wells Reserve at Laudholm. This program is free and open to the public, and starts at 7 p.m. Come early for social time and refreshments.