Fuzzy Yet Focused Greater Roadrunners

How can that be? Well, I’m just making a small photography joke.

Fuzzy? Yes, and that was my fault. As the roadrunners darted around, out of, and into the shrub evidently holding their nest, they moved so quickly and stopped so infrequently, that I never got a sharp shot of them with the nesting materials. Although, as you will see below, I had plenty of chances.

Focused? Yes, and that was all on the roadrunners. I’ve seen them wandering around sort of aimlessly — hunting, I presume, but looking very in-the-moment — but these birds were on a mission: Gather nesting material.

Some brittle stuff was ideal in their estimation: I saw one of them deliberately plant its feet and wrench a tangled bundle off last year’s shrubbery growth. Some brittle stuff was inadequate for reasons I couldn’t discern: I saw one of them repeatedly pick up what looked like dried-grass hairballs and then dismissively throw them away. Not up to standard . . .

Shrub under which a pair of roadrunners is building a nest

Stepping out the front door

3-photo collage of roadrunners

Rare moments of repose and reflection

4-photo collage of roadrunner running with nesting material

Gotta go, gotta go!

2-photo collage of roadrunner selecting just the right stick

This stick? Of course not. *This* one.

2-photo collage of roadrunner arriving back at nesting area with materials

This will be your best shot, lady . . .

Read more about the greater roadrunner here, and their breeding behaviour here.

Find out about the lesser roadrunner (Who knew?) here.


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6 Responses to Fuzzy Yet Focused Greater Roadrunners

  1. Judith Umbach says:

    Great photos! Excellent focus on an elusive bird.

  2. Thanks, Isabel, I really needed to know about the breeding behavior of the greater roadrunner. The dangling mouse bit certainly is memorable.

  3. Reminds me of a big dog who wanted to play “stick”, so I threw a biggest one as far as I could. When it landed it broke into a half dozen pieces. That dog would not return until he had every last piece of that stick in his mouth. Good boy!

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