Monday, June 29, 2015

Anahuac - beautiful as ever!

Saturday we spent three hours at Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge, probably our favorite nature site in southeast Texas. Even when there aren't a lot of birds around, the refuge always producing at least a few interesting sightings - plus we both love the wetlands landscape.

On this trip the refuge was as beautiful as we've ever seen it. 

Much of the water surface in Shovelers' Pond was covered in waterlilies.

And grazing among the lilies were Purple Gallinules. Lots of Purple Gallinules. We saw at least ten adults from the road around the pond.

Best of all, though, we were privileged to be able to watch a family of two adults and five chicks out in the open for more than ten minutes.

Surprisingly, we saw many fewer Common Gallinules - only a handful of adults and two chicks.

We would have felt the 2-hour drive to Anahuac was well worthwhile if all we had seen had been Gallinules. However, there were many other bird species present on this trip. I'll wait to comment on these until my next posting.

1 comment:

Marilyn Kircus said...

You are making me homesick here. I consider Anahuac my home refuge. So glad to see the purple gallinules flourishing. I too have noticed a HUGE decrease in common gallinules. There used to be hundreds - and high hundreds at that. The last several times I've been there, I saw a few score.

Coupled with even having a purple gallinule that may have spent the winter there, and this huge increase of the species, I wonder if the climate had caused the food common gallinules eat to decrease. Or if and invasive species is take the place of their prefered food. l