To Friends Of
Cave Creek Canyon

The Birds of South Fork

Last month we showed the owls of So. Fork.  This month we will show some of the other birds that bring birders to So. Fork - which is considered one of the nicest birding walks in the U.S.

             Male Elegant Trogon above           Female below

Hepatic Tanager                                    Dusky-capped Flycatcher
           Cooper's Hawk on nest by gate.                     Bridled Titmouse

   Painted Redstart                                                                   Arizona Woodpecker   

Don't Forget the Occasional Black Bear! He doesn't
 fly much, but runs real fast!

[Arizona Woodpecker by Robert Shantz.  Other Images by Bettina Arrigoni]

       Where:    The new Geronimo Event Center next 
to the Chiricahua Desert Museum. 
Location:   NM 80 & Portal Road  - Just North of Rodeo, NM
       When:        Friday , July 29th - Saturday July 30th, 2016 
Detailed Schedule: (Click here) 
Go to the new Web Site for more information and registration www.cwpbioblitz.com 
A BioBlitz is an intense period of biological surveying in an attempt to  
record all the living species within a designated area. Teams of volunteer scientists, naturalists, families, students, teachers, and other community members work together to find and identify as many species of plants, animals, microbes, fungi, and other organisms as possible during an intensive field study over a continuous time period.

Celebrating Our Natural and Cultural Heritage!
At the New Geronimo Event Center 
 Professional Presentations 
Great Food
[Details to follow]


Slate-throated Redstart

[Images by Jackie Lewis]

This is a very unusual species for this area and many people are coming to see them. 
Updated Report
The first adult was reported on May 3 rd  Jackie Lewis reported 2 adults on May 19 and  3 fledglings on June 19 th  (two photographed and one voice on video only).   
      The female was reportedly seen mating with the Painted Redstart after  the fledgling.    The young could be a mix of hybrid or pure as birds are not monogamous. 
[Above picture was taken to the west of Onion Saddle, below Pinery Campground]

                          Below are two of the  fledglings

The Growing Agave Or The 
Shrinking Rolf 

Agaves are succulents with a large circular bunch of thick, fleshy leaves, each ending generally in a sharp point and with a spiny margin.
     Each plant grows slowly to flower only once. During flowering, a tall stem or "mast" grows from the center of the leaf rosette and bears a large number of short, tubular flowers. After development of fruit, the original plant dies, but suckers are frequently produced from the base of the stem, which become new plants.
     It is a common misconception that agaves are cacti. They are not related to cacti, nor are they closely related to Aloe whose leaves are similar in appearance.   [From Wikipedia]

The nectar of the flowers is loved by tanagers, orioles, hummingbirds and insects.
Stories of the Past
Murder and Insanity in Portal

The Chiricahua Bullsheet, an entertaining and highly opinionated newsletter and journal of local history written by Carson Morrow
Courtesy of Dick Zweifel

When it first came into existence in about 1905, it adopted the name of Portal because it was considered a gateway to Paradise, which at that time was a thriving mining camp.   Not one of the present buildings were any part of the original town, nor are there any buildings on the present site. The only thing that is left of the original town is the name.
     The founders of the town had, or thought they had a good reason for building up on the Mesa to the west of what is now Portal, rather than down along the creek in the shady spots. About that time a flood came down Cave Creek which covered all the bottom land to a depth of several feet and left drifts up in the trees as a reminder.
     There were two saloons, one in a walled up tent was operated by a man by the name of McManus.   The other saloon was housed in a lumber building and was owned and operated by a man by the name of Boswell, he was a nice appearing quiet spoken man but nevertheless shot and killed two men in his saloon. The first was a fellow by the name of Reed (no relation to Stephen B. Reed), and the others name was Jewell.....
      Reed and several others had been on an all night binge at Boswells and when the party broke up about day break he went home and got his rifle, forced his way into the saloon and attempted to shoot Boswell who got his pistol from under the bar and shot him in time to save his own life.
     The second killing also occurred after a nights drinking and gambling spree, and before day break, Jewell came back to Boswells and demanded another drink. Boswell had gone to bed in his living quarters which adjoined the bar and refused to get up and let him in, so Jewell who had armed himself with a heavy caliber rifle shot the lock and part of the door facing off and came in anyway. Boswell got up and went into the bar room to pour him a drink. While he was doing that Jewell shot out the light as Boswell ran back into his bedroom, picked up his double barreled shotgun and mowed him down.
     Two old time Portal residents, Jim Coachman and Hugh Rowe went insane and were committed to the Insane Asylum at Phoenix. Some little time before this occurred Coachman told Ed Epley that Row was going crazy, that he could tell from the look in Rowe's eyes. It so happened that Coachman went off the beam first and was sent to the bug house several months before Rowe. When the officers arrived there with Rowe, Coachman came up and shook hands with him and said "Hello Hugh, I knew damned well you would be here before long, I told them fellows down there that you was going crazy a long time ago." 

Stop in the Visitor Information Center 

Meet Alex, the new Intern for FOCCC            Meet John the new volunteer host


Cochise's Head

Napping on Cochise's nose, with his forehead visible in the left, and Portal & Silver Peaks far beyond on the right. Photos by Jonathan.

Just another of the different life zones of this unique area.

[The Portal-Rodeo Hiking Club]




Friends Of Cave Creek Canyon
PO Box 16126
Portal, Arizona 85632


Visit Our Website 

Thanks to our "Sustainer's Circle" members 
for their generous support:  
Tom Arny, Bob and Bettina Arrigoni, Nancy and Thomas Denney, Bud and Kate Fackelman, Mary George, Bill and Sally Hague, Paul Hirt and Linda Jakse, Leuthold Family Foundation,  Barbara Lounsbery,  Patrick McNamara, John and Karin McQuillan, Barbara and Pete Miller, Richard and Patricia Parran, Tom Roseman and Paula Baldwin, Delia Scholes, Mike and Cecil Williams and Bob and Sherry Zoellick.

Please support our Business Members  who  have given generously to Friends Of Cave Creek Canyon.  Without their assistance, we would be hard pressed to accomplish our goals. Click on their names to check out their websites.    
                     Birders B & B
                 Cave Creek Ranch                           Chiricahua Desert Museum
             Naturalist Journeys, LLC                                   Orchid Davis   
                 Sky Island Rolfing                                      Wynne Brown LLC
                  Chiricahua Gallery               Everett Jones Realestate (Helen Snyder)
            Pi Irwin & Zsombor Zoltan                            Ed Newbold Wildlife Artist
                     Quailway Cottage                                      Mercury Websites
                   Rodeo Tavern                                     Portal Peak Lodge & Cafe                  The George Walker House                             Painted Pony Resort
Business Memberships start at just $50.00!