35 quick ones!
My sleep schedule has been incredibly predictable for this entire adventure. I sleep 6-6.5 hours every night irrespective of how much riding I do on that day. Most days I wake up without an alarm, but I normally set it as an insurance policy. However, last night in my exhausted state I managed to set the alarm for 6:30pm. Despite being in bed at 12:00am, I did not wake up until 7:30 this morning. 7.5 hours is certainly the most I have slept in one night this year. Yesterday apparently wore me out mentally and physically.
Today erased any lingering bad memories of yesterday. Morning temperatures were low, road conditions were great, and I deliberately dawdled along the service road for much of my ride. From here I was able to add both Cassin's sparrow (#355) and a female Vermillion flycatcher (#356). The sparrow was a real treat as I saw several males doing display flights from the tops of mesquite bushes. For his display, the male sparrow leaps off the top of a bush and flies 15-20 feet up into the air as he sings. He then flutters and floats very softly back down to another perch from which he will repeat these acrobatics in another minute or so. His song is a multi-sylable, melodic trill/warble, and it is one of the prettier ones heard in these parts. It was really nice to just loaf on the roadside and watch these guys today. The birds never came within photo range, but I did snap a quick shot of their dry, mesquite habitat. It's amazing that they can thrive in such an arid habitat!
Cassin's sparrow habitat
Last night was a really long entry, so I'm going to keep this one short. Tomorrow I am going to head to Iraan which is about 50 miles west of Ozona. I may make a 10-mile detour to search for Gray vireo, but I will see how the first 20-25 miles go before I make that decision.
Best Western Ozona. Four BW's in 4 nights for me!