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Field Guides Tour Report
Texas Coast Migration Spectacle I 2015
Apr 11, 2015 to Apr 17, 2015
John Coons

Gorgeous plumes were the style of the week at the rookery at High Island. These birds were in full plumage and color as evidenced by the bright green lores of this Great Egret. (Photo by participant Fitz Fitzpatrick)

This was a great week of birding with new migrants coming in to High Island each day and wonderful birding in the east Texas piney woods, where we found many breeding specialties. The unsettled weather and rain was conducive for fallout conditions on the coast, but we did not see any large fallouts until our last afternoon at High Island. Instead, we had steady migrants all week, with no slow days where we had to really scour the woods for birds.

Our good fortune started on our first morning with nice looks at a Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Red-headed Woodpecker, and Brown-headed Nuthatch right off the bat. The rest of the day was almost magical as we worked the Big Thicket hard in case we had rain the next morning. We found a brilliant Prothonotary Warbler and Northern Parula on our way to lunch before getting a crippling view of a singing Swainson's Warbler along the roadside. We had nice looks at a singing Bachman's Sparrow in the middle of the afternoon followed by Prairie, Hooded, and Yellow-throated warblers and a fantastic encounter with a pair of Barred Owls that were calling during the day.

We headed toward the Gulf Coast the next morning, seeing a few American Golden-Plovers and Upland Sandpipers along the way. Getting to the woods at High Island is always exciting as you don't know what to expect. A Blue-winged Warbler was one of our first birds there and we also saw Worm-eating, Blackburnian, Black-and-white, Tennessee, and Kentucky warblers, Ovenbird, and Yellow-billed Cuckoo, among others. A great way to start on the coast.

Over the next few days we spent the mornings at Anahuac NWR, the Bolivar Peninsula, searching rice fields, and at Sabine Woods before returning to High Island in the afternoon. In our travels away from the migrant traps we found American and Least bitterns, Bald Eagle, King and Clapper rails, Purple Gallinules, Snowy, Wilson's and Piping plovers, lots of shorebirds, nine species of terns, Crested Caracara, Scissor-tailed Flycatchers, perched-up Sedge Wren, Gray-cheeked Thrush, Nelson's and Seaside sparrows, and a Bobcat. At the woodlots, each day brought new species and more looks at previously seen species. Golden-winged Warbler showed well, as did a male Cerulean, and we encountered many more warblers.

On our last afternoon we started seeing a few more Scarlet Tanagers and Tennessee Warblers than we had seen earlier in the day. By late-afternoon we were seeing loads of birds just as they were arriving from the south. There were a lot of Summer and Scarlet tanagers, Baltimore and Orchard orioles, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, Yellow-throated and Blue-headed vireos, tons of Eastern Kingbirds, and a parade of warblers just kept coming. Looking at so many birds was tiring.

On our way to the airport the next day we found a group of four Hudsonian Godwits in a flooded field and a brilliant singing male Painted Bunting. It was a great way to finish up.

The whole week was great fun with all of you and we got a chance to enjoy some east Texas cuisine and the hospitality of the folks everywhere we stayed. I look forward to the next time we get together.


One of the following keys may be shown in brackets for individual species as appropriate: * = heard only, I = introduced, E = endemic, N = nesting, a = austral migrant, b = boreal migrant

Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
BLACK-BELLIED WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna autumnalis) – We saw a few of these near the coast.

Here are just two of the hundreds of American Avocets we saw in beautiful light at Rollover Pass on the Gulf Coast. (Photo by participant Fitz Fitzpatrick)

FULVOUS WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna bicolor) – We had pretty good views of this local specialty at Anahuac and near the rice fields.
WOOD DUCK (Aix sponsa) – A pair were seen briefly flying through the pines at Jones State Forest.
MOTTLED DUCK (Anas fulvigula) – Not many, but we saw a few pairs near the coast.
BLUE-WINGED TEAL (Anas discors)
REDHEAD (Aythya americana) – There were three on the lighthouse pond on the Bolivar Peninsula. These are birds still hanging about from the winter.
LESSER SCAUP (Aythya affinis) – At least one, a late wintering bird, was on a pond on the Bolivar Peninsula.
Podicipedidae (Grebes)
PIED-BILLED GREBE (Podilymbus podiceps)
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)
NEOTROPIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax brasilianus) – These were very common and we saw several on nests at the rookery at Smith Woods.
DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax auritus) – Only a few were seen.
Anhingidae (Anhingas)
ANHINGA (Anhinga anhinga) – Two were seen flying over Winnie on our last morning.
Pelecanidae (Pelicans)
AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) – A fair number were on one of the dredge islands visible from Rollover Pass.
BROWN PELICAN (Pelecanus occidentalis) – Quite common in a couple of places along the coast.
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
AMERICAN BITTERN (Botaurus lentiginosus) – We had a good view of one at Anahuac then a couple more further away.
LEAST BITTERN (Ixobrychus exilis) – Great looks of one that Peg spotted at Anahuac as it stood motionless in the reeds.
GREAT BLUE HERON (Ardea herodias)
GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba) – We saw several at nests at the rookery where the plumes were in full splendor.
SNOWY EGRET (Egretta thula) – Also seen in good numbers including those at the Smith Woods rookery. A few had the bright red lores which they show in breeding plumage.
LITTLE BLUE HERON (Egretta caerulea)
TRICOLORED HERON (Egretta tricolor)
REDDISH EGRET (Egretta rufescens) – We saw about three of these coastal specialists at Rollover Pass and Bolivar Flats.
CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis)
GREEN HERON (Butorides virescens)

This was one of the two Barred Owls we had a great experience with as they called and flew in during the day in the Big Thicket. (Photo by participant Fitz Fitzpatrick)

BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax) – We only saw a few but got them on the day we saw all the Texas herons and egrets in one day.
YELLOW-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nyctanassa violacea) – Nice looks at a few birds in wet fields with our first in a rain-soaked field near Beaumont.
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
WHITE IBIS (Eudocimus albus)
WHITE-FACED IBIS (Plegadis chihi)
ROSEATE SPOONBILL (Platalea ajaja) – Great views of many in brilliant colors at the rookery at Smith Woods.
Cathartidae (New World Vultures)
BLACK VULTURE (Coragyps atratus) – A daily sight, these were not around High Island before Hurricane Ike in 2008.
TURKEY VULTURE (Cathartes aura)
Pandionidae (Osprey)
OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus) – We saw a couple along the Bolivar Peninsula.
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
WHITE-TAILED KITE (Elanus leucurus) – At least two were seen along the Bolivar Peninsula with our first at the Flats.
NORTHERN HARRIER (Circus cyaneus)
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (Accipiter striatus) – One flew over the motel parking lot as we were gathering one morning. This is a quite uncommon species here.
BALD EAGLE (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) – As we were scanning a rice field for shorebirds, Peg spotted an adult soaring above us.
RED-SHOULDERED HAWK (Buteo lineatus) – We saw one or two in the Piney Woods on our first couple of days.
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (Buteo platypterus)
SWAINSON'S HAWK (Buteo swainsoni) – There was a nicely soaring individual in the rice fields on one of our visits.
RED-TAILED HAWK (Buteo jamaicensis)
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
KING RAIL (Rallus elegans) – Great looks at a close individual at Anahuac. We had this species close to our view of the Clapper Rail which offered a nice comparison.
CLAPPER RAIL (GULF COAST) (Rallus crepitans saturatus) – Nice views of a couple of this usually skulking species.
SORA (Porzana carolina) [*]
PURPLE GALLINULE (Porphyrio martinicus) – There were several at Anahuac NWR with whom we had nice encounters.
COMMON GALLINULE (Gallinula galeata)
AMERICAN COOT (Fulica americana)
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-NECKED STILT (Himantopus mexicanus)
AMERICAN AVOCET (Recurvirostra americana) – There were a lot of these at both Rollover Pass and Bolivar Flats.
Haematopodidae (Oystercatchers)
AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus palliatus) – A couple of pairs were at Rollover Pass on our first visit. These are always a treat to see.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Pluvialis squatarola) – There were a good number in various stages of dress.
AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER (Pluvialis dominica) – We saw a few individuals at the sod farm and a couple more in a rice field.
SNOWY PLOVER (Charadrius nivosus) – It took some looking but we spotted a distant bird at Rollover Pass before then finding two more much close. This is one of the more uncommon of the regularly occurring shorebirds in the area.
WILSON'S PLOVER (Charadrius wilsonia) – Nice views of a few at Bolivar Flats.
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER (Charadrius semipalmatus) – These migrants were quite common in some of the rice fields and at Bolivar Flats.
PIPING PLOVER (Charadrius melodus) – Nice views of several individuals at Bolivar Flats where these seem to have done well after Hurricane Ike.
KILLDEER (Charadrius vociferus)
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
SPOTTED SANDPIPER (Actitis macularius)
SOLITARY SANDPIPER (Tringa solitaria) – We saw one in a rain flooded rice field on our last morning in the High Island area.
GREATER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa melanoleuca)
WILLET (Tringa semipalmata) – These seemed to be everywhere near the coast.
LESSER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa flavipes)

A couple of Great Egrets tend to their morning chores in the tidal marsh at daybreak on the Texas Coast. (Photo by participant Fitz Fitzpatrick)

UPLAND SANDPIPER (Bartramia longicauda) – Our first two were in the sod farm and gave us good views then we had another that was quite close to us on the Bolivar Peninsula.
WHIMBREL (Numenius phaeopus) – We saw lots of these including a few good flocks in the rice fields.
HUDSONIAN GODWIT (Limosa haemastica) – On our last morning we found four in breeding plumage at the back of a rain flooded rice field.
MARBLED GODWIT (Limosa fedoa) – We saw a handful along the coast on the Bolivar Peninsula.
RUDDY TURNSTONE (Arenaria interpres) – Nice looks at brightly plumaged breeding individuals.
STILT SANDPIPER (Calidris himantopus) – There were about four individuals mixed in with dowitchers and Pectoral Sandpipers in a rice field.
SANDERLING (Calidris alba) – We saw tons of these along the beaches on the peninsula.
DUNLIN (Calidris alpina) – There were certainly a lot of these around this year. We saw some brightly plumaged birds with black breasts and several in full winter plumage but most were somewhere in between in their molt.
LEAST SANDPIPER (Calidris minutilla)
PECTORAL SANDPIPER (Calidris melanotos) – There were at least 50 individuals in one flooded rice field we scanned.
SHORT-BILLED DOWITCHER (Limnodromus griseus)
LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER (Limnodromus scolopaceus) – We had nice looks and comparisons with the above species in the flooded fields.
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
LAUGHING GULL (Leucophaeus atricilla) – This is the common gull along the coast, and they certainly are common.
RING-BILLED GULL (Larus delawarensis) – We only saw a few of these here and there.
HERRING GULL (AMERICAN) (Larus argentatus smithsonianus) – These were only seen along the Bolivar Peninsula beaches.
LEAST TERN (Sternula antillarum) – There were good numbers of this small tern on the beaches. This species seems to have done well after Hurricane Ike as a lot of sand got washed onto the peninsula providing more nesting habitat.
GULL-BILLED TERN (Gelochelidon nilotica) – We had nice views of a couple of individuals on the beach at Bolivar Flats.
CASPIAN TERN (Hydroprogne caspia)
BLACK TERN (Chlidonias niger) – There were a few around on the sandbar at Rollover Pass.
COMMON TERN (Sterna hirundo) – A good number of lingering birds were on the beaches and sandbars.
FORSTER'S TERN (Sterna forsteri)
ROYAL TERN (Thalasseus maximus)
SANDWICH TERN (Thalasseus sandvicensis) – One of the sharpest looking terns, we saw several with the large flocks of terns at Rollover Pass.
BLACK SKIMMER (Rynchops niger) – There were at least 150 individuals at Rollover Pass.
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) [I]
EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE (Streptopelia decaocto) [I]

Ever on the lookout for the perfect stick for the nest, this Roseate Spoonbill was one of many breeding at Smith Woods at High Island. (Photo by participant Fitz Fitzpatrick)

INCA DOVE (Columbina inca) – A fairly recent invader to the High Island area, we saw a couple almost every day there.
WHITE-WINGED DOVE (Zenaida asiatica)
MOURNING DOVE (Zenaida macroura)
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
YELLOW-BILLED CUCKOO (Coccyzus americanus) – We only had a couple of birds at Smith Woods on the day we arrived at High Island.
Tytonidae (Barn-Owls)
BARN OWL (Tyto alba) – Some of us saw one of these ghostly birds flying about the hotel in High Island as we gathered one morning.
Strigidae (Owls)
BARRED OWL (Strix varia) – We had a great experience with a pair of birds in the Big Thicket. On a cloudy afternoon we heard one calling before it came in to the edge of the water. Soon, another flew in and the two started calling back and forth right above us. I think this is one of the best sounds in nature.
Apodidae (Swifts)
CHIMNEY SWIFT (Chaetura pelagica)
Trochilidae (Hummingbirds)
RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD (Archilochus colubris) – We saw these daily at High Island.
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
BELTED KINGFISHER (Megaceryle alcyon) – There were a surprising number of individuals seen along the Bolivar Peninsula.
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) – This was one of the first birds we saw as we got out of the vans at Jones State Forest on our first morning. It is really a great looking woodpecker.
RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER (Melanerpes carolinus)
YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER (Sphyrapicus varius) – A dingy looking individual was still hanging around from the winter at Smith Woods.
DOWNY WOODPECKER (Picoides pubescens)
RED-COCKADED WOODPECKER (Picoides borealis) – We had great looks at this rarity on our first morning at Jones State Forest. These birds seem to be doing well despite urban creep in the area.
PILEATED WOODPECKER (Dryocopus pileatus) – One of these large woodpeckers landed in a tall pine on the edge of the road as we birded the Big Thicket.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
CRESTED CARACARA (Caracara cheriway) – A couple of individuals flew in on the Bolivar Peninsula. These have gotten more common here in recent years.
AMERICAN KESTREL (Falco sparverius)
Tyrannidae (Tyrant Flycatchers)
EASTERN WOOD-PEWEE (Contopus virens) – These had not yet arrived in numbers but we had a few at High Island.
GREAT CRESTED FLYCATCHER (Myiarchus crinitus) – A handful were encountered at Smith Woods as migrants.
EASTERN KINGBIRD (Tyrannus tyrannus) – We saw lots of these each day around High Island.
SCISSOR-TAILED FLYCATCHER (Tyrannus forficatus) – After being tempted by a few along the roadsides we finally had several individuals in the rice fields and at Anahuac. Always a crowd favorite.
Laniidae (Shrikes)
LOGGERHEAD SHRIKE (Lanius ludovicianus) – We had daily sightings of this interesting bird with our first right behind our motel is Silsbee.
Vireonidae (Vireos, Shrike-Babblers, and Erpornis)
WHITE-EYED VIREO (Vireo griseus) – One of the common voices of the Big Thicket area we saw a few well enough to see the white iris.
YELLOW-THROATED VIREO (Vireo flavifrons) – Our first was a local breeder in the Big Thicket, then we saw migrants almost daily at High Island.
BLUE-HEADED VIREO (Vireo solitarius) – Formerly known as Solitary Vireo, this species showed well a few times in the migrant traps at High Island.
WARBLING VIREO (Vireo gilvus)
RED-EYED VIREO (Vireo olivaceus)
Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)
BLUE JAY (Cyanocitta cristata)
AMERICAN CROW (Corvus brachyrhynchos)
FISH CROW (Corvus ossifragus) – We saw our first in Silsbee where they have recently moved in to this small town. We later had a few at the ponds near Beaumont. In Texas, this has been a coastal restricted species until recently.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
PURPLE MARTIN (Progne subis) – After seeing several at the condo at our lunch spot, we saw them daily at High Island.
TREE SWALLOW (Tachycineta bicolor) – LOTS of these were on the wires in some places.
BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica)
CLIFF SWALLOW (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota)
Paridae (Tits, Chickadees, and Titmice)
CAROLINA CHICKADEE (Poecile carolinensis) – We were greeted by the calls of these as we got out of the van on our first morning.
TUFTED TITMOUSE (Baeolophus bicolor) – Pretty much restricted to the piney woods we saw them our first two days in the field.
Sittidae (Nuthatches)
BROWN-HEADED NUTHATCH (Sitta pusilla) – A great little southeast specialist we had a few just overhead in the piney woods.
Troglodytidae (Wrens)
HOUSE WREN (Troglodytes aedon)
SEDGE WREN (Cistothorus platensis) – Great looks at a singing bird along the roadside near Anahuac.
MARSH WREN (Cistothorus palustris) [*]
CAROLINA WREN (Thryothorus ludovicianus) – This is another common voice of the Big Thicket.
Polioptilidae (Gnatcatchers)
BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER (Polioptila caerulea)
Regulidae (Kinglets)
RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET (Regulus calendula) – A few late-wintering individuals were still around in various places.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
EASTERN BLUEBIRD (Sialia sialis) – We saw males and females at boxes at Jones State Forest.
VEERY (Catharus fuscescens) [*]
GRAY-CHEEKED THRUSH (Catharus minimus) – We only saw one, at Smith Woods, during our time at High Island.
SWAINSON'S THRUSH (Catharus ustulatus) – Thrushes were late arriving this year but we had a few on our last day at High Island.
WOOD THRUSH (Hylocichla mustelina) – Though we only saw a couple we heard several singing softly from the woods.
Mimidae (Mockingbirds and Thrashers)
GRAY CATBIRD (Dumetella carolinensis)
BROWN THRASHER (Toxostoma rufum)
NORTHERN MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus polyglottos)
Sturnidae (Starlings)
EUROPEAN STARLING (Sturnus vulgaris) [I]
Bombycillidae (Waxwings)
CEDAR WAXWING (Bombycilla cedrorum) – Our first were ar Jones State Forest but we heard more passing over at High Island.
Parulidae (New World Warblers)
OVENBIRD (Seiurus aurocapilla) – We had surprisingly good views of a couple of these during the week.
WORM-EATING WARBLER (Helmitheros vermivorum) – There were about five individuals around on our first day at High Island then we saw a few more during the week.
LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH (Parkesia motacilla) – There were a couple of brief encounters. Most of these have moved through by the time of our trip.
NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH (Parkesia noveboracensis) [*]
BLUE-WINGED WARBLER (Vermivora cyanoptera) – We had nice views of a few birds during the week.
GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER (Vermivora chrysoptera) – A brilliant male showed nicely on our second day at High Island. This is always one of the more sought after species here.
PROTHONOTARY WARBLER (Protonotaria citrea) – After seeing a few on the breeding grounds in the Big Thicket we had a couple more as migrants at High Island.
SWAINSON'S WARBLER (Limnothlypis swainsonii) – Wow! We had tremendous views of a singing bird right along the roadside in the Big Thicket. It is rare to see this skulker so well. Later, we had a brief look at one at Sabine Woods.
TENNESSEE WARBLER (Oreothlypis peregrina) – These were quite common on some of the afternoons at High Island.
ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER (Oreothlypis celata)
NASHVILLE WARBLER (Oreothlypis ruficapilla) – Only a couple were seen.
KENTUCKY WARBLER (Geothlypis formosa) – This often hard to see species also performed well and gave us good views.
COMMON YELLOWTHROAT (Geothlypis trichas)
HOODED WARBLER (Setophaga citrina) – We heard many singing in the Big Thicket and saw it quite well before encountering a few more as migrants.
AMERICAN REDSTART (Setophaga ruticilla) – We saw several including a male in a small shrub at Bolivar Flats where it had probably just arrived after a long flight.
CERULEAN WARBLER (Setophaga cerulea) – On our last full day we caught up with this beauty at Boy Scout Woods.
NORTHERN PARULA (Setophaga americana) – Several were seen, including a few local breeders in the Big Thicket.
BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER (Setophaga fusca) – We had a few great looks at this dazzler at High Island. This is one of the more colorful warblers in a long line of color.
YELLOW WARBLER (Setophaga petechia) – These finally arrived on our last day at High Island.
CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER (Setophaga pensylvanica)
PINE WARBLER (Setophaga pinus) – This was a very common voice in the piney woods where we saw a few of them.
YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER (Setophaga coronata) – A few dingy individuals are often hanging about from the winter so it was no surprise to see a couple of them. Most have already headed north.
YELLOW-THROATED WARBLER (Setophaga dominica) – We had great looks of a singing bird right above us in the Big Thicket where it is a quite local breeder.
PRAIRIE WARBLER (Setophaga discolor) – Another local species we had nice looks at a singing bird in a regenerating pine plantation in the Big Thicket, another great looking bird.
BLACK-THROATED GREEN WARBLER (Setophaga virens) – Some days there were several in the woods at High Island.
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT (Icteria virens) – We heard a few in the Big Thicket but we only got a quick look at one at Sabine Woods.
Emberizidae (Buntings and New World Sparrows)
EASTERN TOWHEE (Pipilo erythrophthalmus) [*]
BACHMAN'S SPARROW (Peucaea aestivalis) – Very nice looks at this very local southeast specialty. It was a surprise to hear it singing in this location and we got nice looks. Yip! Yip! Yip!
CHIPPING SPARROW (Spizella passerina) – We saw a few small flocks that were lingering from the winter.
SAVANNAH SPARROW (Passerculus sandwichensis)
NELSON'S SPARROW (Ammodramus nelsoni) – Peg spotted one quietly peering out of the coastal prairie reeds. It gave us a great look. This species, which breeds in Minnesota, North Dakota and southern Canada, has a long way to go in a short time.
SEASIDE SPARROW (Ammodramus maritimus) – We had nice views of a few individuals in the marshes on the Bolivar Peninsula.
SWAMP SPARROW (Melospiza georgiana) – We saw a late wintering bird at Anahuac.
WHITE-THROATED SPARROW (Zonotrichia albicollis) – We heard these singing at Jones State Forest and again at Smith Woods. [*]
Cardinalidae (Cardinals and Allies)
SUMMER TANAGER (Piranga rubra) – There were good numbers of these around on several days at High Island.
SCARLET TANAGER (Piranga olivacea) – This stunner showed well on a couple of the days.
NORTHERN CARDINAL (Cardinalis cardinalis)
ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK (Pheucticus ludovicianus)
INDIGO BUNTING (Passerina cyanea)
PAINTED BUNTING (Passerina ciris) – Having not encountered these during our stay at High Island, we took a detour on the way to the airport and found a brilliant singing male.
Icteridae (Troupials and Allies)
RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD (Agelaius phoeniceus)
EASTERN MEADOWLARK (Sturnella magna)
COMMON GRACKLE (Quiscalus quiscula)
BOAT-TAILED GRACKLE (Quiscalus major) – We had many good views of these coastal prairie specialists, especially at Anahuac NWR.
GREAT-TAILED GRACKLE (Quiscalus mexicanus)
ORCHARD ORIOLE (Icterus spurius) – We had a fair number on a few days.
BALTIMORE ORIOLE (Icterus galbula) – Only a few were seen, I guess the big numbers had not yet arrived.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) [I]

SWAMP RABBIT (Sylvilagus aquaticus) – These are quite common in the woods near the coast.
EASTERN GRAY SQUIRREL (Sciurus carolinensis)
BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN (Tursiops truncatus) – A couple were seen in the mouth of Galveston Bay.
COYOTE (Canis latrans) – We saw a couple of there dashing off the road edges in the rice field areas.
BOBCAT (Lynx rufus) – Wow! It was really great to see this very cool cat slowly walking down the birding path near the Entrance to Anahuac NWR.
LLAMA (Lama glama) – Marcia won't let me off the hook unless I put the llama she saw on the triplist.


Totals for the tour: 191 bird taxa and 6 mammal taxa