The Binocular Site

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico

Bosque del Apache means “woods of the Apache” and refers to the Apache people who once camped here, as they were observed by the Spanish settlers.

This spectacular refuge is home to tens of thousands of birds along its shores and sands, as they gather in autumn and settle for the winter. Cranes, geese, and ducks fill the skies and waters, alternatively feeding and taking flight to roost in the nearby marshes.

With over 340 species of birds, there are a diverse range habitats along this northern edge of the Chihuahuan desert. While the heart of the refuge is moist bottomland including floodplains, extensive wetlands, farmlands, and riparian forests, much of the area consists of foothills, mesas, desert sands, and mountain rises.

Elevations range considerably, with peaks up to 6272 feet high balancing out lows of 4500 feet. Extensive trails and observation points make hiking and birding a delightful way to spend the day.

Other creatures in the refuge include coyotes, mule deer, and elk, along with reptiles, amphibians, and fish. Hunting and fishing are, therefore, popular activities here in Bosque del Apache as well. See the Bosque del Apache website for more information.

The state bird of New Mexico is the Greater Roadrunner and you can find a birding checklist for New Mexico here.

Photo credit to veesees, used with permission under the creative commons license.

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