Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday at Baytown (2)

The wetland area on the edge of Scott Bay isn't in the most attractive location.

However, when I arrived, it had a nice selection of waders, including 8 Roseate Spoonbills, and a dozen or so Great and Snowy Egrets.

A Great Blue Heron was too far away to photograph but several Tricolored Herons and a Little Blue Heron were just within range.

Although two adult Yellow-crowned Herons tried very hard to avoid being photographed, I managed to get a quick shot of one of them.

Unfortunately, there were very few shorebirds, and the ones that were present were too far away for decent photos: a Least Sandpiper, a Solitary Sandpiper, half-a-dozen Western Sandpipers and two Least Yellowlegs.

Beyond the wetlands the main trail ends at a gate but trails lead off to the right and the left. I headed right to the Scott Bay Overlook. I scanned the bay with binoculars, looking unsuccessfully for the Common Loon that had been reported there a couple of weeks earlier. All I could see were 50 Brown Pelicans, some swimming and some just standing about.

Back at the gate, I crossed the main  trail and looked over Heron Haven pond, disturbing a pair of Belted Kingfishers as I did so.

Snags in the pond were providing perches for three Black-crowned Night-Herons, the heron/egret species that I seem to see least often on my birding trips.

The path left from the gate gave me an even better vantage point for scanning the pond.

Several snags had Neotropic Cormorants.

Another snag had the only Osprey I saw all morning.

My final sighting was of three Anhingas. Two were perched on snags. 

Even when these birds are not swimming, it is easy to see why some people call them "snakebirds".

The third Anhinga circled overhead as I left Heron Haven and headed back to my car.

Although I had seen only a handful of the shorebirds I had been hoping for, I had really enjoyed my visit to Baytown. It was particularly interesting to see so many large wading birds, and to get to watch many of them from just a few yards away.

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