Thursday, August 20, 2015

Beach Birding

Sunday morning we drove over to spend an hour in Quintana. The bird sanctuary there was completely dead but a small wetland area by the road had a nice group of birds: Great and Snowy Egrets, Roseate Spoonbills, White Ibis and White-faced Ibis.

Some of the Spoonbills clearly had not yet gotten their deep pink plumage.

One of the Ibises seemed to have a very dark eye and turned out to be a Glossy Ibis. 

It's always fun to watch Snowy Egrets, whether they are just hanging out or actively looking for prey.

The edges of the pond had several Black-necked Stilts.

Given my earlier success in watching a Black Skimmer fishing at Brazoria, I was surprised to see another here.

The jetty area was crowded but we had the beach almost completely to ourselves.

At first glance, the only birds seemed to be Laughing Gulls and terns.

The latter included several Sandwich Terns, easily distinguished by the yellow tip on their black bill.

Royal Terns were more numerous and they included some hungry immature birds.

The small size, yellow beak and white forehead of this bird identified it as an adult Least Tern.

Nearby were a few juvenile Least Terns.

We spent a few minutes admiring Royal Terns as they flew around.

After a while I noticed the terns and gulls had been joined by a solitary Willet.

I'm not good at IDing shorebirds but this one's greenish-yellow legs seem to make it a Least Sandpiper.

An adult Semipalmated Plover was the next bird to appear.

The long, thick beak of another bird marked it as being a Wilson's Plover.

I scanned the sky over the sea for passing Magnificent Frigatebirds but the only birds I spotted were Brown Pelicans. 

Although our brief visit to Quintana Beach hadn't been as productive as we had hoped, we both enjoyed it and at least we had seen a few birds there.


Pam said...

You've got some cracking shots of the Terns!

Jeff said...

Thanks, Pam. Bit tricky with my equipment but some pics weren't too bad.