Birding at Patagonia Lake State Park
Our friend the Elegant Trogon usually spends from November until March at the east end of the lake along the birding trail. He and the male and female Green Kingfisher are the current big attractions big attractions.
For places to bird in the area see the descriptions below.
Birding Trail at Patagonia Lake State Park: The trail begins at kiosk at the east end of the campground. The first 1/4 mile is level terrain, then a short section of steps down and through a gate to the lake. Ducks and wading birds like the shallow, reedy area on your left. Woodland birds prefer the mesquite and hackberry trees on the right. The trail opens onto a grazed area with Goodings Willows. The trail leads to the east end of the lake with a good view of the water. Sonoita Creek’s delta is the primary birding area. Behind you is a riparian area of cottonwoods and willows where many avian species can be found. If you follow the creek, usually with some wading, you will eventually reach the Circle Z guest ranch fence about 2 miles upstream. Return by the same route. The trail is open the year around.
Birding near the town of Patagonia
The Nature Conservancy’s Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve: 7:30 am. -4 pm. Closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Fees: $6 per person. Conservancy members and Santa Cruz/Cochise County residents $3. Patagonia residents and children under 16 are free. Location: 150 Blue Haven Road just outside of Patagonia.
The Paton Center for Hummingbirds: (Check to see if they are open; renovations going on) 212 bird species have been reported for this cozy home lot on the outskirts of Patagonia, including Violet-crowned Hummingbirds, Gray Hawks, Varied Buntings, Green-tailed Towhees, Thick-billed Kingbirds, and many more local specialties. Gates are open dawn to dusk. Entry is free of charge, but donations are accepted. Location: 477 Pennsylvania Ave. Patagonia, AZ