Friday, April 23, 2010
John and I are back in Texas on a birding trip. I've been twice before, the last time in 2003, John's third trip was in 2005. Day 1 was a travel day and we got in just before dark, so we didn't see much. Our first bird sighted was at the Houston Hobby airport - a great-tailed grackle. Other than many more grackles, we saw a few house sparrows on the first day - not much to get excited about.
Day 2 was much more interesting. We visited the Boy Scout Woods and Smith Oaks sanctuaries in High Island, the Rollover Pass area and Bolivar Flats.
I fell in love with Least Terns today - they're small, they're chattery and just plain cute. This one's doing a wing stretch. Photo taken at Bolivar Flats
Great-tailed Grackles are everywhere! They're also loud and annoying, yet amusing. Photo taken at the rookery in Smith Oaks, High Island
We saw 87 species today - one of them was a "life bird" for both of us - an American Oystercatcher. It was fair day for warblers - which is a big reason for coming to the TX coast in April. It's migration time and birds stop along the wooded areas of the coast to rest and refuel after flying across the gulf of Mexico before continuing northward. We saw 7 warbler species today.
Notable species for the day (in no particular order):
Black-throated Green Warbler
Northern Parula Warbler
John took this photo of a stunning male Scarlet Tanager. We saw him in Boy Scout Woods on High Island.
I've posted more photos from Day 2 on Flickr.