Texas Day 2: Electric Boogaloo


Foggy morning seemed like a bad omen
Yeah right, we saw a bunch of birds anyway
And arachnids
But nobody’s home here


We also saw a horse
Though we received an apology for not seeing more
Apparently Texas should have more free range Horses


Our best look at an Olive Sparrow.
we heard them singing during the whole trip
But Texas birds are tricky
and there are lots of places to hide.


This is South Padre Island
If you like Herons, Egrets, Shorebirds, and Ducks
There may be no better place
incredible beauty in diversity
and the boardwalks make this barrier island very accessible.


This Tricolored Heron thought I needed a closer look
It flew right up to the boardwalk so I could get a better view
“Check my wings bro!”


It is difficult describing this shorebird
If vanilla frozen yogurt is your dessert of choice
You will love a Willet.


The Black Skimmer
Looks like it was made from too many bird parts
But it has a niche,
and the niche is skimming.


Surprisingly overlooked
Maybe because they are literally everywhere
Great Tailed Grackle
Succeeds in getting my attention.
They are easier to focus on if they are solitary.


We saw our Texas alligators too!
They came in two sizes
Adorable Baby sized


And Big Chompy Mom sized


Green heron reminds me of a tiger
Maybe it is the yellow eyes
or the ready-to-pounce posture
Absolutely prepared to eat some tiny fish


I loved Jurassic Park
I love dinosaurs
And I think that is why I love bird watching
That and I get to keep obsessive lists
Look at this Common gallinule’s  feet though!
So Stabby!
Probably makes putting socks on difficult.


Little Blue Heron
One of my favorite birds of the trip
The largest legitimately blue bird I have seen
But wait, it also gets a purple head?
Wait?  It also stabs fish?
So good.


Scanning the surroundings
Is fairly difficult
If your perch is only a foot off the ground
Silly Osprey


More Willet
I just can’t get enough
And I can’t explain why
Vanilla elegance?
Is that a thing?


Little girl doesn’t care about how great these birds are
Or maybe sand is more important
These flocks would pop up periodically
Mostly due to tourists taking Skimmer selfies
Or people parking on the Skimmer part of the beach
Weird coexistence with cool birds at South Padre


The most proactive fisherbird I have seen
Chases and flaps wings maniacally
And it works?
These guys are hilarious to watch, and I love them.
White Morph Reddish Egret


After South Padre
We trekked into the wastes
Post apocalyptic bird watching

Little waste scavenger
A little water here
A little snack there
The future is bleak
But we make due
And find hope in the little things
Being able to fly


Spotted Sandpiper
Found respite among a bit of grass
Normally a bird you’d find next to water
If there was water


Ahhh I’m just playin’
I love a post apocalyptic hypothetical
This place was really just a weird boat ramp
That led out to a cracked-earth mudflat.
Here’s another Willet.
And in this photo you get to witness their true beauty>
Vanilla exterior
But the wings,
Oh the wings:
Chocolate swirl.


Semipalmated Plover
Probably stuffed with marshmallow
Eyes on the skies
Gotta make sure his delicious candy interior
Stays on the interior
For as long as possible.


After the apocalyptic memorial boat dock
We went to Mexico
At least our phones thought we did
Kept changing to international roaming
This is a photo of Mexico
From our side of the Rio Grande
You can’t hear Mexican Folk music blasting
But know it is there.


Laughing Gulls were everywhere
At Boca Chica
But also everywhere else
Though I tend to appreciate a gull a bit more
When it is at the beach
Maybe I just like the ocean.


Mid laugh-laughing gull
Their eye crescents
Dark coloration & red bill
Make these very attractive birds
Underappreciated due to frequency seen
Oregonians would go nuts if one showed up here.
(only three ever have).


Just a lil crab
There were several
Living terrestrial lives
In tiny hobbit holes
This one’s body was about the size of a quarter


Constantly running in the surf
Stopping while the water recedes
Grabbing a tiny snack
And running again
Busy life of a Sanderling


Yellow-crowned Night Heron
A bird I had seen before in the Dominican Republic
And a bird I really wanted to see again
This was our best look
As it landed behind our car on our way home
I leaned out for a photo
Such a great body shape
Head/bill are so menacing looking
Yellow eyes help too.
I want to see more soon.

20170325-_T9A3871The last good bird of the day
Ruddy Turnstone
Their face kind of reminds me of Rorschach
Rorschach Turnstone
Too bad if I rename birds nobody knows what I am talking about

Day two was a great day
A long day with 26 new bird species I have never seen before (lifers)
I ended up taking about 1,500 photos, and we went bird watching for about 12 hours
Here are the my three eBird checklists if anyone is curious.

For your convenience if you missed it
Preliminary Texas Trip Report
Texas Day 1: Lower Rio Grande Valley

And here is where I put a link to Day 3
In a couple of days… man this blogging stuff is a lot of work.

3 thoughts on “Texas Day 2: Electric Boogaloo

  1. Pingback: Rio Grande Valley – Photo Diary Day 1 | Eric Carlson

  2. That grackle photo is awesome. Surrealist. Looks like it has two little tiny wings on a giant body.

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