Elegant Trogons of Arizona

My first good view of the male Trogon.

My first good view of the male Trogon.

While in Arizona for the Tucson Audubon Bird and Wildlife Fest, a barely got out to shoot or view any birds. However, Sunday evening after closing down the vendor area and packing up, I drove to Madera Canyon to seek the Elegant Trogons that still had young in their nest.

Upon arrival at the location, a met a couple who had attended the festival and they were patiently awaiting the birds’ return. As I set up my tripod, the male flew in, called, then flew back out of sight.

The second Elegant Trogon fledgling to leave the nest.

The second Elegant Trogon fledgling to leave the nest.

Suddenly one of the juveniles flew from the nest, followed by the other. They perched for a few moments outside the nest experiencing the surprise of their first free flight! After a few quick photos of the young birds, they followed the voice of dad and disappeared.

I waited patiently after the other photographers left. The light was waining and I was ready to walk away when I heard the male quietly calling a short distance up the trail. I followed the sound and there he was — the remaining light offering a faint rim around his shape.

As the light waned I was rewarded...

As the light waned I was rewarded…

After a bit, he flew down the trail and I followed, found an opening in the trees and waited. I was rewarded for my patience when he flew in right in front of me for a few brief seconds before disappearing high into the trees as the final rays of light dissipated.

—Kevin Loughlin
http://wildsidenaturetours.com

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