On Sunday morning decided to check out the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge before heading towards Boy Scout Wood Sanctuary. But lost my way and instead did birding just around the fields. But still the birding was amazing. Got to see my first Swainson's Hawk, Black-bellied Whistling ducks and Cave Swallows. Also saw some Dowitchers, Black-winged Stilts, Mottled Ducks and White-faces Ibises. And there were lot of singing Dickcissels in the fields. There was a lone Crested Caracara on the road feeding on a road kill.
|Black-bellied Whistling Duck|
At 8:30 joined the morning walk at Boys Scout Wood Sanctuary. Saw the regulars like Tennessee Warblers, Orchard and Baltimore Orioles along with Indigo Bunting and Rose-breasted Grosbeak. The new arrival were Nashville Warbler. And on the trail we saw Red-tailed Hawk, Broad-winged Hawk, couple of Green Herons, Crested Caracara, Loggerhead Shrike and a Veery.
After the walk with the group decided to head towards the prothonotary pond to check for water thrushes again. We see 2 different waterthrushes around Northern Waterthrush and Lousiana Waterthrush. But did not have luck the previous day and the morning as well. So wanted to try my luck again since this being my last day at the place. Luckily just when we arrived at the pond we saw a lone Northern Waterthrush feeding at the pond edge. Could not believe our luck and we had another surprise visitor at the pond, the Kentucky Warbler. There were lot of Catbirds and the thrushes(Swainsons and Wood) flying around the area. Another interesting find of the morning was a Worm-eating Warbler.
For the afternoon walk we went to Rollover pass first to try our luck and there again we saw lot of people presence because of which the bird activity was very less. But there was one Clapper Rail which was taking bath out in the open. Did not seem worried with lot of people around. After spending about 15 min at the place we decided to head towards Bolivar flats. Its another Audubon bird sanctuary on the shores. We saw lot of Terns, Gulls and Sanderlings around. We also saw a lone Snowy Plover and couple of Piping Plovers. We also saw a Reddish Egret doing its drunken dance and successfully catching its morning meals. There were lot of Sanderlings and Wilsons plovers around. We saw lot of terns which included lone Caspian , Sandwiched, Black, Common, Least, Forsters and Royal terns. We also saw few Ring-billed Gulls and a lone Lesser-backed Gull.
|Royal Terns dancing :-)|
For evening walk headed back towards Smith Oaks Bird Sanctuary. Had to bird in the rain the whole evening. We did not see lot of birds when we started but batches of birds kept flying in. At one point all we could see were thrushes(Wood, Swainsons and Veery). There were lot of Blackburnian and Black-throated Green Warblers. We also saw couple of Ovenbirds. Since I had to be home by night had to end the evening walk a little earlier than planned. But on the whole the weekend couldn't have gone any better. It was once in a lifetime experience and hopefully I will get a chance to visit this place again(Hopefully next spring).
Boys Scout Wood Sanctuary : http://ebird.org/ebird/view/
Bolivar Flats : http://ebird.org/ebird/view/
Smith Oaks Bird Sanctuary : http://ebird.org/ebird/view/
Birds seen during the day :
|6||Great Blue Heron|
|20||Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)|
|77||Lesser Black-backed Gull|
|95||Black-throated Green Warbler|