Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Brazoria NWR (2)

First stop at Brazoria was the pond near the Visitor Center and this had more water in it than we'd seen there in our past several visits.

Great-tailed Grackles were busy around the edges of the water, while the air was filled with the beautiful songs of Red-winged Blackbirds.

A Great Egret and a Little Blue Heron took offence at our presence and flew off.

They were instantly replaced by a Tricolored Heron, which landed and stalked purposefully through the water looking for prey.

A juvenile Yellow-crowned Night Heron perched on the boardwalk had the ungainly look of all young birds.

But there was certainly nothing ungainly about it as it flew off to hide in the nearby reeds.

The small butterfly garden had Gulf Fritillary butterflies and several other types of insect.

The road up to the salt lake was surprisingly empty of birds except for a White-tailed Kite and a Willet. However, we stopped to watch some of the many small crabs that crossed the trail in front of us.

The fishing area at the lake had only a solitary Forster's Tern and a Laughing Gull.

Laughing Gull

In the distance, we could see a large collection of other birds: Brown Pelicans, Great and Snowy Egrets, Great Blue Herons and Reddish Egrets. Unfortunately, the area was absolutely overrun with small red-winged bugs. Although they didn't bite or sting, the bugs swarmed us so much that we were glad to get back into the car and drive back to the Visitor Center to start the auto-loop around the rest of the refuge.

More tomorrow.

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