Having been a fan of Wile E. Coyote over the years, I looked forward to photographing the famous Roadrunner during my recent visit to the Southwest.
Along desert roadsides they can be quite shy and elusive, most often seen sitting atop fence posts or up in tall brush and mesquite, however in villages where they have been habituated to humans, they can be quite approachable.
I found this cooperative fellow in Los Chisos Mountain village. I was amazed by his ability to pluck flies out of the air, two feet above his head!! Lightening fast reflexes and a great stalker!!
In the heat and frenzy of photographing the Varied Bunting in Rio Grande Village, unbenownst to me, a Roadrunner snuck up alongside, no more that 3 or 4 feet away. All of a sudden, I heard a commotion to my right and spinning round, spotted a Roadrunner who had just plucked a House Sparrow from a low lying branch. Just managed to capture his escape into the underbrush, his prize firmly in his beak. Death on the Rio Grande!!
I wonder why Warner Brothers never showed things like that???
Elsewhere, the Roadrunner has become a commercial icon of the Southwest. Here a 20 foot tall statue adorns a roadside rest stop in Los Cruces, New Mexico.
Head close up. Meep! Meep!