Sunday, November 27, 2011

Mosquito Woods and other pit stops

Our trip down to Sabine Woods turned up more mosquitos than birds. Raptor activity was high and their were at least two Barn Owls prowling the canopies during the early morning, but the trip overall was a dud and lasted less than an hour. The mosquitos didn't seem to mind that we'd bathed in OFF prior to setting foot on the trails. We drove a few miles down to see the state of Sea Rim Park, which is still in disarray after Hurricane Ike. On a tip from a local we tried Tyrrell Park in Beaumont. Unfortunately, Cattail Marsh... the main attraction... was closed, undergoing remediation work. Defeated, we returned to our hotel in Orange.
The next morning we decided to try our luck at Claiborne West Park just up I-10 near Vidor. The parking lot yielded one lonely blue-phase Snow Goose.

The trails didn't give us anything we hadn't seen the day before. Around the swampy lake near the front of the park we saw several Eastern Phoebes, Eastern Bluebirds and several woodpeckers - included a solitary Northern Flicker. As we were leaving, this juvenile Red-Headed Woodpecker peeked out of his home to check us out.

I'm off to Qatar next week, so the birds will have to wait. Next up is Christmas in the LRGV.

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