November 3, 2013: A few weeks ago Chris Rohrer and I went looking for the red-breasted Sapsucker that was being seen in Madera Canyon. We went to the location where the bird was being seen. We walked all around and searched all the trees. We heard flickers and saw Mexican Jays, but no sapsucker. However, as we were walking past a picnic table I spotted something in the grass. I reached out and grabbed Chris’s arm and told him to freeze! Then I pointed to the green creature slithering through the grass and over the asphalt pad beneath the table.
Apparently this is a rare Green Rat Snake! What a beauty! And then, as we walked down a nearby path we found this:
Madera Canyon is a world class birding area in Southern Arizona. Located in the Santa Rita Mountains, it is reached by driving to Green Valley and taking Continental Road to White House Canyon Road. Once you enter the canyon, it’s like you are in another world.
After leaving the White House Picnic Area we drove farther up into the canyon. It was late in the afternoon and shadows were already falling across the rim draping the canyon in violet light. Farther up the road we found a few more birds, but no sapsucker.
Though we didn’t see the Red-breasted Sapsucker, one can never have a bad day in Madera Canyon! Just watch where you step because you never know what you will find underfoot!