Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Trail on Skillern Tract

.Crossing the bridge, we turned left onto a new concrete path, which gave good views over more flooded fields. The fields seemed to be empty.

Then swarms of thousands of birds would rise up in the distance.



Sometimes the swarms were caused by Northern Harriers diving down onto ducks and other birds grazing in the water.


The path soon ends at an observation platform overlooking a stretch of wetlands that was very busy with hundreds of Blue-winged Teal as well as American Coots, Common Gallinules, Pied-billed Grebes and a single Least Grebe.


We saw few large waders except for this Tricolored Heron.


On our way out of the Skillern Tract, we passed a Loggerhead Shrike that had found a good perch from which to hunt.


Back on FM1985, we were lucky enough to come across a Swainson's Hawk that was too busy grooming to be disturbed by our presence. What a magnificent bird!


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3 comments:

Birdwoman said...

Wow! Beautiful Swainson's! We have to try Skillern next time we are there.

Jeff said...

The tract is certainly well worth a visit when there is water around. So it should stay good for at least a few months now.

Marilyn Kircus said...

Sounds like the least grebe is going to stay there. The breeding ones were in the hunt area and out of the public view. But its really neat to see them expanding to Chambers county.

And thanks for spreading the word about the Skillern Tract. It will be the best birding place on the refuge this winter.