For the past two summers Mary Beth Stowe has heard a Botteri's sparrow singing somewhere NE of Sal Del Rey in Hidalgo County. As far as I know there are no county records but I never got up there to check it out. Well a few days ago she heard one in the same location to make it three years in a row and this time got a good sound recording. So I headed up there yesterday and sure enough there it was singing in perfect habitat. I have to say "Thanks MB for my Hidalgo County bird #350." In fact I think I had three birds including young. Problem is it's hard to separate them from Cassin's Sparrow which I also heared singing in the distance.
There was also this young Black-throated Sparrow.
Mary Beth also had three Purple Gallinules at a neaby pond I had not previously visited. Sure enough they were still there.
And while looking for the gallinuels I got a brief look at this rare Claret Pondhawk. It may be the northernmost ever recorded. When I first saw it I thought it was a Red-tailed Pennant and was not even going to photograph it, then I recognized what it was as I looked through the lens.