On our backpacking trip up Indian Pass Canyon in Death Valley, we did see a few different kinds of birds: A raven kept us company part of the way, and warned all the other wildlife that we were coming. In the evening, we were visited by a lovely dove, and then a tiny Costa hummingbird, with its stunning royal purple head, stopped by for a visit. That was a treat.
We also saw some other birds entirely--including a jet fighter that shot over our car at what seemed like a height of fifty feet. Since it came from slightly behind us, we didn't even know it was there until it exploded past us with a roar. We both just about jumped clear out of our seatbelts on that one. And the next morning, we saw a stealth bomber flying high overhead, accompanied by some kind of spotting plane. What on odd looking bird that thing is.
The fighter reminded us of one we saw a few years ago at Death Valley, as we and a group of people stood on the edge of the narrow canyon under Father Crowley's overlook. A jet fighter roared down the canyon below us, seeming to have only fifty yards on either side of the plane, and going faster than we could really imagine.
Sometimes the birds aren't in the sky above--they're below you!