Birds in New Mexico

Birds in New Mexico

Birdwatchers who want to experience the southwest, we know your first instinct is to book a ticket for Arizona. Think twice though, because the adjacent state is none other than New Mexico. A state with one of the highest bird species lists of America.

What Is The State Bird Of New Mexico?

The Great Roadrunner was appointed the prestigious position of New Mexico’s state bird in 1949. Known by its many names, from El Paisano, El Correcaminos to the Chaparral, the Roadrunner demonstrates a clear preference for the shrubs and desert areas, often running around northern Mexico. For capturing its prey, a roadrunner it’s capable of running 15 miles per hour and seems content to do so for obtaining food rather than through flight.

What Are the Top Bird Watching Spots In New Mexico?

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge is responsible for one of the greatest showcases of birds in America. When winter begins, thousands and thousands of Sandhill Cranes begin showing up here and where birds go, bird watchers follow. This entire event turns into a festival in a nearby town and people even come to the area on field trips. You can also see lots of Broad-tailed Hummingbird, Chihuahuan Raven, Lesser Nighthawk, Crissal Thrasher, etc nesting in the area.

Rio Grande Nature Center State Park is a small area with a recorded species list of 300. Black-chinned Hummingbird, Bushtit and Spotted Towhee are some of the birds seen here.


How Many Birds Can You See in New Mexico?

Birds in New Mexico are presented in the form of 556 different species. There isn’t much difference between the species counts in all the counties. However, some counties do luck out by having some of the most sought after birds in their area. Individually, Socorro, Eddy, Dona Ana, Sierra, and Bernalillo have a species count of 434, 433, 424, 406 and 403.

Bosque del Apache NWR has a wonderful species count of 375 and it’s certainly one of the hotspots highly recommended by birdwatchers. Bitter Lake NWR and Carlsbad Caverns NP also have an appeal of their own, highly regarded by New Mexico bird watchers. You have the chance of seeing 341 to 321 species in these places.

Top Birds To See In New Mexico

California Scrub Jay are a species with a blue head and wings and gray chest area and back. The bird species is quite short and on the lean side. People love taking pictures of this species.

Lewis’s Woodpecker is a species with a mix of faded red and black color on it. From the family of woodpeckers, these birds are a rarity. You would be lucky to see them in the state.

Common Birds To See In New Mexico

Albuquerque and the city of Las Cruces as well as Santa Fe is used to the likes of Curved Bill Thrasher and Gambel’s Quail. Gila Woodpeckers are also a very common bird you will see in New Mexico.

Final Thoughts

The joy of watching birds in New Mexico reaches its absolute peak when you get to experience the Sandhill Crane wintering season in Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. That experience alone is a good enough reason to plan a trip to New Mexico.

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