Thursday, October 31, 2013

Birding Carlsbad, New Mexico

I am linking up with NF Winged   and  Skywatch Friday 

 I think by now everyone knows I went to New Mexico on vacation. One major attraction for hubby was seeing the Carlsbad Caverns and I figured there had to be birds there for me to see. The first day was mainly a travel day and on the second day we visited the Carlsbad Caverns and the national park. I am sharing some birds from the park for my NF Winged entry and I have some sky shots from around the Guadalupe Mountains.


We were up early and on our way to the Carlsbad Cavern National Park when we stopped to watch the sunrise.  


There were many New Mexico birds that were not lifers, like the House Finches above.


The Guadalupe Mountains and the moon seen from the road going into the Carlsbad Caverns National Park.


The Cave Swallows were a lifer.  It was fun watching the Swallows going in and out of the cave.



We hiked into the natural entrance of the caverns, 750 feet down. It was a steep one mile  hike for the Natural Entrance and  took us a little over an hour then we arrived at the BIG room which was another one mile walk.


I was able to watch this American Kestrel while it was watching the Cave Swallows.


For a scenic shot and showing off the pretty blue sky, I am sharing the view of the Cavern hole ( near the left middle of the photo and the seating for the bat flight program. It was cool to experience the bat flight, swarms of bats coming out of the cave.  As more bats poured out of the cave, I could look up in the sky and see the previous swarm of bats. The bats fly around at night eating within 30-50 miles of cave and then return early in the morning. The Cave Swallows wait for them to leave and they go back inside the cave for the night. Photography was not allowed during the bat flight program.




It was cool to watch the moon setting behind the Guadalupe Mountains. I hope you enjoyed my Carlsbad birds and my sky photos. We spent the first three nights in Carlsbad and visited the caverns and park a couple of times.

 Thanks for visiting my post and  blog and I always appreciate your comments.

  Happy Skywatching everyone!

To see more pretty skies from around the world please visit  Skywatch Friday
and to see more of the winged critters check out NF Winged

Thanks to Sylvia, Yogi  and Sandy for hosting Skywatch Friday! Thanks to Monica the host of NF Winged.   I wish everyone a safe and happy weekend.

80 comments:

Sue said...

I sure wish I could get MY hubby to get up that early. We always miss the BEST stuff because he doesn't get up until.....whenever.
When it comes to birding, the early bird, well....you know!

Pallavi said...

Such a scenic place for a hike Eileen. The picure of the moon is stunning! I have never seen the moon look so big.. must have been a surreal experience.

Thanks for sharing :)

The happy wanderer. said...

An interesting post. That was a lot of Cave Swallows. It's interesting that the bats use the caverns during the day, and the Cave Swallows at night.

Nancy Claeys said...

Def a place I want to visit someday!

Lynne said...

Wonderful photos Eileen . . . so great you and your husband enjoy birding and exploring together!

EG CameraGirl said...

I haven't been to New Mexico in years - way before I became a birder. I LOVE those moon shots!

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I love that sunrise pic and I love those moonshots at Guadalupe Mountains.

LindyLou Mac said...

Such stunning photos from your travels.

Chris Rohrer said...

That is awesome! NM has lots of treasures! And Cave Swallows!

Montanagirl said...

I've been to Carlsbad as a little girls with my parents. Vague memories. Your moonshots are fabulous! Happy Halloween!

Giga said...

Z pewnością miłym przeżyciem było zobaczyć wiele jaskółek wylatujących z jaskini. Ślicznie wygląda prawie pełen księżyc na niebieskim niebie. Pozdrawiam.
Certainly, it was a nice experience to see many swallows flying out of the cave. Lovely looks almost full moon in the blue sky. Yours.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Love the huge moon at the horizon. And the cave swallows...how fantastic.

Chris Rohrer said...

I would love to see Cave Swallows. New Mexico is a real birder treat as we've discovered. So glad you went to visit. Did you spot any American White Pelicans? Such a strange sight in that state:) I'm off to work but I'll be back. And congrats on the CASW:)

Misti said...

I love the Guadalupe Mountains, was there two years ago. Great hike to the top of Guadalupe Peak, however we never got over to Carlsbad Caverns. Now you are making me want to go back!

TexWisGirl said...

wow, that last shot is awesome! the bats and swallows would be neat to watch!

ladyfi said...

Wow - fabulous shots. Love that big silver moon.

Gail Dixon (LaBelle) said...

Eileen! My favorite shots are the Guadalupe mountains and the moon. That last shot is freaking AWESOME!

Joop Zand said...

Great shots Eileen....specially the moon pictures...these are superbe !

Greetings, Joop

Jo said...

What beautiful sky shots especially the moon rising over the mountains. I've never seen a Cave Swallow, so I learn more by visiting your blog. What a wonderful sight the bats must be from that well-placed seating area. Have a great weekend. Greetings, Jo

Ana Mínguez Corella said...

The last picture is so beautiful.. Love it.. Congrats..

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Wow, so, so beautiful Eileen. Your moon images are outstanding!!!

Daniel LaFrance said...

Sounds and looks like you had a grand time. The cave and its residents must have been exciting see and hear!

Happyone said...

Great photos as usual.
I'd love to go down in the caverns!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

The moon-set is amazingly beautiful as are all your pictures. It is really a unique and wonderful area isn't it!One of our favorite states to RV .

DIMI said...

Hallo Eileen!!!
What an interesting post!!!Such wonderful pictures!!!The sunset, all those beautiful birds, the cave and last,that large moon!!!Amazing!!!
Thank you for sharing!!!!Have a happy new month!!Hugs!!
Dimi...

Charlotta said...

Fantastic trip and marvellous photos. Have a nice evening!

Steffi said...

Fantastic photos for SWF,Eileen!Thank you for sharing and have a nice weekend.

George said...

I really enjoyed your sky photos -- the pictures of the moon dropping below the mountains are fantastic. I also liked your photo of the Cave Swallows.

Barb said...

Eileen, Did you mind going that far into the cave? I'm a bit claustrophobic. It's fun to think that the swallows and bats share the same home at different times. Great moon shots!

Ranten said...

A great moon!

NatureFootstep said...

Stunning shots today Eileen. Love the birds of course, but also the moon shots and landscape in general. :)

Sylvia K said...

Superb captures as always, Eileen, and your moon/sky shots are totally awesome!! Haven't been to Carlsbad in many years -- great memories!! Thank you for those! Have a lovely weekend!!

The Furry Gnome said...

Awesome moon photos!

Carver said...

Your sky shots are fantastic. Wonderful to see the sunrise, moon and birds.

Terrebel said...

IMHO you saved the best for the last, Eileen...wonderful shot of the setting moon! Thanks for tagging us along on your journey.

Have a good weekend!

Terrence

Laura said...

Wow Eileen!!! all gorgeous photos, the moon over the mountains in the last photo is spectacular!!!

Brian King said...

Gorgeous sunrise and those moon shots over the mountains are simply fantastic! I'd frame one!

Betsy Adams said...

Wow --that last shot is fabulous!!!! Amazing!!!!

Glad you managed to see some birds on your latest trip. As much as I love my Backyard Birds, I never go on vacation searching for birds.. SO--guess I'm not really a 'true' Birder… ha

Hugs,
Betsy

Karen said...

Lots of birds and beautiful skies. Your moon shots are awesome!

Indrani said...

Wonderful sky shots Eileen, I wish I could take something like that, particularly the last one.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Spectacular moonsetting shots over the mountains. I love how you know your birds. It looks like you had a good vacation.
I visited Carlsbad Caverns 39 years ago. I was too young and stupid to appreciate it so I plan on getting a do-over.

Stephanie said...

Fantastic moon shots!

lina@womens perspectives said...

Admire your shots, Eileen. The last photo is awesome.

Our photos said...

The moon photos are so beautiful!
Greetings, RW & SK

Stewart M said...

Those moon shots are great!!

I need to get up earlier!

Stewart M - Melbourne

Noushka said...

I bet you had a ball during this trip!!
What a fantastic place!
The moon going down behind the Guadalupe mountains are 2 great shots
enriching your collection of sky pics!
Cheers Eileen!

Birgitte said...

Jeg har virkelig nydt dine billeder :-) Og sikken en måne ;-)

Gunilla Bäck said...

Wonderful photos! Following the swallows and the bats flying in and out of the cave sounds like a very interesting experience. Have a lovely weekend!

Crafty Green Poet said...

Beautiful photos, it must be amazing to see the cave swallows

Elaine said...

it must have been fascinating to watch the bats swarm out of the cave. Interesting that the swallows take their turn at night. I love your moonset shots!!

Phil Slade said...

Amazing to see that giant moon shot Eileen. I think bats are fascinating, especially to see a large cave roost exiting like you did. Fantastic to see all those Cave Swallows too. Enjoy your weekend soon - Friday morning here.

Huldra said...

What a beautiful set of pictures. The moon is stunning! I'd really like to be in your shoes that day.
Thank you so much for sharing :)

magiceye said...

Superb captures all! Bat photography not allowed due to flash?

inge said...

You are so great at capturing the atmosphere of the place. Simply stunning photos

•°°• IcyBC •°°• said...

Fantastic and beautiful photos! Love love the moon shots going down! Just amazing and pretty!

Gattina said...

Beautiful pictures ! especially the last one, which is really gorgeous !

Jan K. alias Afanja said...

Wonderful series, Eileen, the last two shots of the moon are absolutely stunning.
Thanks for sharing and enjoy your weekend.

Lea said...

Beautiful!
Happy Sky Watching!
Lea

Rajesh said...

Wonderful images from your Mexico trip. Setting moon is cool.

MastHoliday said...

Splendid shots!! specially love the sunrise shot..

Ajay Kumar said...

All Shots are fantastic!! Have a nice day.

DrillerAA09 said...

Sunrises and sunsets are my favorite skywatch photos and you have captured a nice one. Well done.

genie said...

Absolutely captivating photographs. Those moon shots are out of this world. What a fabulous trip you are sharing.

Loredana Donovan said...

Wow, what a beautiful place! The moon shots are amazing! Happy weekend! :)

Reader Wil said...

Hi Eileen! Wonderful photos as always. That enormous moon over the mountains is quite impressive!
Have a great weekend.
Wil

acreativeharbor.com said...

Always enjoy your traveloge ~ Fantastic photography and what a sight to see the sky, mountain and mood! Gorgeous! ~ xx

Debbie said...

a great set of images but those moon shots are way too cool!!

rainfield61 said...

Life is beautiful.

Life is so beautiful.

Betty Manousos said...

hi eileen,

breathtaking as usual. i just love your sunsets. i can almost feel the tranquility pouring out of the picture.

happy weekend~

big hugs!

Jori said...

Your shots of the moon are breathtaking!

MitchyLR said...

Hi Eileen!! What a wonderful set of shots!! Both the birds and the moon photos are fabulous. Carlsbad is a place in my list of places to visit. Maybe one day!!

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

Eileen as always your photos are amazing.
What an interesting part of the world.
Interesting birds but - pray tell what exactly is a "lifer" sorry to be showing my ignorance.

My favourites are you moon photos - you could almost touch it - just stretch a little bit more!!!

Enjoy your weekend!
I'm visiting from Skywatch!
Shane

Our Neck of the Woods said...

Those moon shots are so cool! Just beautiful. I wanted to see the bats flying when I visited the caverns, but we didn't get to see it. I bet it was so neat!

Leovi said...

Wonderful moon, is exceptional, exquisite photos!

Sandy Carlson said...

Amazing. I am amazed by that landscape. Like a dried ocean bottom.

toby said...

Gorgeous all, but those moon shots are exquisite - wow!

Linnea said...

I always think of blue sky when I hear the words New Mexico! And what blue skies you captured during your trip! Wow! Great shots as usual. Thanks for visiting my post. Enjoy the week.

Liz said...

Such a great series, Eileen! But I must say, that moon setting with the mountain is absolutely magnificent!!

thomas said...

Wow!Love the last shot of the moon.

Jen Sanford said...

I am finally catching up on your New Mexico adventures. So cool! The moon shots are gorgeous, I bet the bats were awesome to watch. Congrats on the lifers!