Black-tailed Gnatcatcher at Hole in the Wall, Mojave National Preserve
Here's a bird I never get to see on the home turf. Black-tailed Gnatcatchers (Polioptila melanura) are creatures of the desert southwest. We were on the second day of our Colorado Plateau field studies journey and had camped the previous night at Black Canyon in the Mojave National Preserve in eastern California. We were wandering around the visitor information center seeing what birds might be around.
The bird chases down insects and generally gets the moisture it needs from the food it consumes. They are true wilderness birds, rarely venturing into urbanized areas, but their numbers have suffered from habitat loss in desert regions of the southwest United States.