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Gavin Bieber on his just-completed tour, Texas: The Upper Coast



April 20: Gavin Bieber on his just-completed tour, Texas: The Upper Coast

Our tour took place over a week where the weather didn't create conditions for a fallout of migrant songbirds along the coast, but the saving grace of the upper Texas coast and environs in spring is that, weather aside, the place is heaving with birdlife and we spent a very enjoyable week exploring the expansive marshes, white sand beaches, coastal woodlots and inland pine and hardwood forests that typify far east Texas.

The rookery at High Island gave us excellent views of Roseate Spoonbill and patient American Alligators.

The marshes of Louisiana held King Rails with fuzzy black chicks in tow and handsome roadside Scissor-tailed Flycatchers.

A trip north to the hardwood and pine forests near Jasper yielded the hoped for Red-cockaded Woodpecker and several warblers on their breeding grounds such as this Hooded. 

The various coastal woodland preserves also held treasures, such as Ovenbirds walking on the open understory of the woods and a stunning Cerulean Warbler on the last afternoon. 

We spent quite some time working on the identification of shorebirds and waders, encountering an impressive 33 species of shorebirds, all 12 possible U.S. herons and nine species of terns; often sitting together for close studies.  It had been several years since I had visited this bird-rich area and I’m thankful for the chance to revisit one of the United States’ premier destinations, and happy to have shared the joys of migration birding with such a fine group. 

Posted: April 20, 2018