Not all bird photographs are taken to be "wall art;" the rarity of certain birds draws birders from near and far to see them, and almost any recognizable image of such a rarity has value and is worth taking. In many cases these photos serve as documentation that a certain bird occurred where it hadn't been expected, and photos are used by state records committees to clinch the identification of some troublesome species that look very much like closely related species that are expected to be in a certain place.

I am as much of a birder as I am a photographer, so I will always be attracted by reports of rarities and wil try to see them (first) and photograph them (if possible).

Since I might get only one or two useful images of such rarities I've decided to give them special status on my web site by putting them in this rarities section, rather than bury them among the Avian Galleries elsewhere on this site.

The Arizona Field Ornithologists web site at has the best information on rare birds seen in Arizona with an extensive collection of photographs taken by field observers. Each bird is accompanied by details about when and where it was seen and photographed, plus usually some background on the history of the species in Arizona. I encourage anyone interested in any of the rare birds I've photographed in AZ to explore the photo galleries at AZFO to learn more and see other images.