Your trip to Southeast Arizona will be greatly enhanced by visits to national wildlife refuges, and Bisbee is a great place to start your tours. If you’re a “birder,” you’ll see many species of hummingbirds right there in Bisbee; just fill up the feeders available at the Toland Adobe vacation rental in Bisbee, AZ, hang ‘em up on the hooks provided on the porch and get ready for the show.
If your bent is to visit a couple of the local “birding” areas here are two suggestions:
1) The Leslie Canyon National Wildlife Refuge. At least 280 bird (including – among others – yellow-breasted chat, Lucy’s warbler, summer tanager, broad-billed and violet-crowned hummingbirds, varied bunting, Bell’s vireo, and black-capped gnatcatcher) 61 mammal, 40 reptile, 13 amphibian, and 8 fish species have been documented on the refuges, and 493 different kinds of plants, including 77 species of grass alone, have been
identified on the refuges. While many of these species are abundant, some are quite rare, and a few of these species are found nowhere else within the United States. Getting there: Take highway 80 from Bisbee toward Douglas. From Douglas, drive north on Leslie Canyon Road. From McNeal, drive east on Davis Road. The roadway continues east through the refuge toward Rucker Canyon in the adjacent Chiricahua Mountains.
2) San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuge. Sister refuge to Leslie Canyon, the San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuge is home at least 335 bird species have been recorded, including many nesting birds. In addition to the diversity of birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles, this region is also known for having the highest diversity of bees in the world with approximately 500 different species collected. Where the San Bernardino Refuge is located, the San Bernardino Valley, is an amazing diversity of pollinators in general, including the black-chinned hummingbird, broad-billed hummingbird, lesser long-nosed bat and more than seventy-five species of butterflies. Getting there: From Douglas, drive east on 15th Street, which turns into Geronimo Trail Road. Drive 16 miles on gravel surfaced road to refuge entrance. The refuge is open every day, during daylight hours only, to walk-in traffic.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in 2014 and has been updated for 2018.