Saturday, January 29, 2011

Texas City Bay Park

Leaving the dike, we drove along the top of the levee to reach Texas City Bay Park. The strip of water between the levee and park was busy with wading birds: Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, White Ibis and Roseate Spoonbills.

Just before reaching the park, we passed a Belted Kingfisher and then disturbed a Red-tailed Hawk. 

We picnicked on a bench, surrounded by huge totem poles (carved by Boy Scouts) and looking over the lagoon that runs along one edge of the park.

One of the trees nearby had a fine Red-shouldered Hawk.


Other trees had Loggerhead Shrike, Eastern Phoebe and a pair of Eurasian Collared Doves.


Most of the birds, however, were in and around the lagoon.

The water's edge had Savannah Sparrows as well as Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs.


A Spotted Sandpiper flew off as I approached but a Snowy Egret was less skittish.

The most common birds on the lagoon were American Coots, Northern Shovelers, Mallards, Pied-billed Grebes, Gadwalls and Lesser Scaup.

 Northern Shoveler

There were also other types of duck present. Although I didn't have a scope with me, I was able to pick out Ruddy Ducks, American Wigeons, Blue-winged Teal and Green-winged Teal. 
 Green-winged Teal

When I totaled the birds that we had seen along the dike and in the park, I was surprised to find that we'd seen 45 species in less than two hours. So apart from the area being much more attractive than we had expected, it was also very productive for birding. We'll certainly be heading down there again before too long.


Kyle said...

That's not a bad tally. And more great shots, Jeff. I'll definitely have to plan a trip down to Texas City really soon. Thanks for the info!

Jeff said...

It's certainly well worth a visit in the winter, Kyle. And it should be very good during shorebird migration, too.

Dave said...

Great day you had Jeff. It's great when you assess the day and realise how good the location was and how many birds easily got onto your day list. Some of the I ages are fantastic. You always seem to do well with the hawk images.

Jeff said...

Thanks, Dave. I like taking photos of hawks. Plus, of course, it's easier to get better pictures of them than, say, songbirds because they're so much bigger.