I saw lots and lots of egrets and herons on this trip. Evidently southern Texas was experiencing a drought while I was there. Due to the drought, the shallow salt water and fresh water ponds were small and sparse. This was very hard on the birds, but made for great birding. Every time I visited a pond, I would see lots of birds feeding there. I hope they get rain soon because at the rate the fish were being eaten in the ponds, I can’t see how that resource can last much longer.
One of my favorite places to visit for the larger bird sightings was Charlie’s Pasture. It’s a 5-mile or so trail that winds its way through the salt water flats. Here’s a pic of one of the areas that should have had water but was dry.
When I did come upon a pool, this is what I would find. Birds everywhere. Needless to say, lots of squabbles broke out among the groups.
I got to finally see a Reddish Egret. Lifer! Such a beautiful bird. I especially love the long feathers on their neck that look like red hair.
Here are some other photos of egrets and herons I got on my trip.
I saw my friendly Tri-Colored Heron at the Leonabelle Refuge. He was quite the ham when I visited there last October. He was even more so this trip. I couldn’t resist photographing him as he just seemed to really enjoy the attention. Plus he looked especially handsome in his breeding plumage.
One bird on my list to see was the Roseate Spoonbill. I feared I wouldn’t see any as the days ticked by. But the day before I left I got to see several. They are beautiful birds!
I saw my first Mottled Ducks on this trip. Lifer! Several had babies. So adorable.
Speaking of babies, I saw my first American Coot baby. They start out with white on them and eventually turn black.
And the most adorable (though not very cute) babies I saw were the Common Gallinule. I was told they were only a few days old when I first saw them. They were a treat to watch. Their wings didn’t have feathers but instead had what looked like hands. They would hold them up and wave them to beg for food. It was hysterical!
Another favorite of the trip was watching the Least Bittern. I saw a pair of them several times. They were working on building a nest, but their location just couldn’t be photographed as it was too deep in the reeds.
While visiting the Aransas Wildlife Refuge, I spotted another lifer for the trip. A Least Grebe. It was very small and dark so was hard to spot. But once I zoomed in with my camera, I was struck by the beauty of its eye.
Here are some other birds that fit this post’s category. Everywhere I looked on this trip, were birds, birds and more birds! Paradise!
This was a big category (including 3 lifers!). I hope you enjoyed the photos. I had a fabulous time taking them! 🙂
13 thoughts on “Egrets, Herons and other Waterfowl in Port Aransas, Texas”
Spectacular! Especially loved the Reddish Egret. This place looks like a paradise! Thank you for sharing!
Thank you Panhirsch! The Reddish Egret was a beauty and very large too so easy to photograph. It was a paradise there! I hated to leave! 🙂
Thank you Belinda! Next up shorebirds! 🙂
What an amazing place to view shorebirds 1nm! Love the boardwalk. Great Egret and Heron shots, especially love the Least Bittern. The baby Gallinules are cute also. Your Ruddy Duck is very similar in most characteristics to our Blue-billed Duck. Thanks for sharing this beautiful showcase of water birds.
Thank you Aussiebirder! It was a great place for birding. All 3 major birding hotspots plus the beach in Port Aransas were all within 5 miles of each other. Fabulous!
I find it curious how similar a lot of our birds are yet you are so far away. Nature is truly amazing!
Fantastic photos! It is so interesting to see so many different birds wading together. It gives a good idea of the size differences. And, wow, that roseate spoonbill is sooooo pink! My favourite photo is of the common gallinule babies. So cute! They look like coot babies (a few days to a week old), except those have all red heads. Coot babies also do the super-cute wing-hand waving to beg for food. I loved your description; it made me smile. Thanks for sharing your photos and observations. 🙂
Thank you so much Myriam! You can see why that roseate spoonbill was on my list of wanting to see! 🙂
Amazing shots of all these beautiful herons and egrets, Kelly! The reddish egret is one of a kind 🙂 Loved the young Moorhen babies!
Thank you so much Tiny! Those babies were so much fun to watch.
I enjoyed these great pictures! Some birds I’ve never seen before e.g the Ruddy duck.
Thank you Fotohabitate! The Ruddy Ducks are so colorful when in breeding plumage. 🙂