Sunday, February 5, 2017
Sierra Vista (1/24 & 1/25/2017) and Patagonia, AZ (1/27/2017)
As mentioned in an earlier posting, Sierra Vista is home to Fort Huachuca, a huge Army base that is home of the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and several units focused on technology. Several canyons in the Huachuca Mountains can only be accessed through the fort. After visiting the base's Visitor Center and explaining my mission, I received a thirty day pass that allowed me to enter the base several times. Exploring the canyons was fun, but I saw little wildlife. A few mule deer posed for me, but the birds refused to cooperate. I was puzzled once by a sign pointing to a spur road, indicating the direction to "Aerostat". An aerostat is a blimp, but this one is equipped with radar, and remained tethered to the ground at its permanent location. Later, I learned that it is used in cooperation with the Border Patrol to detect illegal aliens and drug smugglers. Later that day we had another colorful sunset.
Other birds included the white-crowned sparrow, the European starling, the curved bill thrasher, the house finch and a female northern cardinal.