Thursday, 8 September 2011

Bosque de Tlalpan, Mexico City, Aug 2011

At the second time of asking, I made it to Bosque de Tlalpan (Google ref; 19 17’ 46”N 99 11’ 34”W) to the south, just outside the Anillo Periferico ring road enclosing Mexico City. After some confusion yesterday, today I was armed with a mental map and a street name, so was able to direct the taxi driver from Universidad Metro Station to the junction at Zacatapetl and Camino a Santa Teresa at a cost of just 20 Pesos (@20 = £1). The bosque may also be known as Parque Nacionale de Pedregal, Tlalpan.

After the marathon on Sunday, I had hoped that the Mexican joggers would have had enough, but the entrance to the park was choked with runners warming up before or cooling down after laps on the specially prepared track.
 Keeping to the right, I was able to get away from the worst of the excitement and quickly found a much quieter route. A tarmac road, heading west-south-west, steeply up the hill, had a couple of side tracks which led away from the alien eucalypts and into much more productive scrubby, rocky slopes.

Venturing along the lower path for a short way produced Grey Silky Flycatchers, Buff-breasted Flycatcher, Western Wood-pewee and a Rufous-crowned Sparrow.

The paths were lined with flowers on this last Tuesday of August and I was surprised to find only 2 Berylline Hummingbirds. Rufous-capped Brush-finches were very vocal with their hard, staccato chipping and a similar call with a trill at the end proved to be the pish-prone Rufous-capped Warbler. I was quite excited to find this bird as I didn’t recall seeing it before and was ready to write him up in red when I got home, until I found that I had previously seen him in his other form as a Chestnut-capped Warbler from Costa Rica.

The upper path led me to the north and ran along the razor-wired boundary wall. In a small patch of forest a feeding party passed through consisting of Black-throated Grey warbler, Bushtit and more Rufous-capped Warblers. There was still the occasional jogger or walker, but I was getting enough time between passers-by to enjoy the quiet. Six Flags, beyond the wall, was ominously quiet and I must assume that it was shut (either for the day or forevermore).
The coarse scold of the Bewick’s Wren was audible through much of the forest and they responded quickly to pishing.

I turned back towards the entrance which was easy enough to find just by heading downhill. A few more species were seen along the way with a Slate-throated Redstart putting in an appearance at last. This stunningly beautiful flower above was found on the descent in the pine forest and I think that this is a Mexican Gray Squirrel (Sciurus aureogaster) with his bright rufous markings above and below. There are also black individuals in the park.

Species seen; 18
Berylline Hummingbird 2, Buff-breasted Flycatcher 1, Western Wood-pewee 4, Grey Silky Flycatcher 20, Bewick’s Wren 5, Blue-grey Gnatcatcher 1, Bushtit 6, White-breasted Nuthatch 1, House Sparrow 25, Lesser Goldfinch 6, Olive Warbler 1, Black-throated Grey Warbler 1, Slate-throated Redstart 1, Rufous-capped Warbler 8, Rufous-capped Brush-finch 4, Canyon Towhee 4, Rufous-crowned Sparrow 1, Black-headed Grosbeak 1.
Bosque de Tlalpan, Parque Nacionale de Pedregal, Tlalpan, Mexico City