Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge

Within sight of I-25 in the middle of New Mexico, just south of San Antonio (not that San Antonio), east of the Very Large Array radio telescope array, west of the Trinity Atom Bomb blast site is a marsh site fed by the Rio Grande. The birds found it.

From all over the continent, Snow Geese, Sandhill Cranes, and numerous other species of duck and geese collect here in the winter. Not surprisingly, eagles, hawks, and other raptors are common as well. Just this morning, we watched a quartet of coyotes stalking the huge flocks of snow geese.

Watching the flocks is fascinating. When they take wing, the thunder of their beat can be heard for miles. The call of massed thousands of geese and the stately squadrons of cranes has to be experienced.

And if you have a camera, be very cautious. If you come here, you won't be able to leave without severe lens envy. Beside the little pond beside highway 1 at dawn, there can be fifty photographers lined up on an old railroad grade, snapping away. And each and every one of them has a lens longer than your arm with a huge bucket of a glass eye. You could find yourself with a ten to twenty thousand dollar wish list in nothing flat.

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