We left Pecos and headed towards San Antonio. Although San Antonio is much bigger of a city than what we are use to, we thought it was a nice place. We spent our time there at a park walking the dog and looking for birds. We saw our first Northern Cardinal while we were in San Antonio, which made us quite excited. We stayed there over night and headed toward Houston in the morning.
As birders, or people who watch for birds, we always have our eyes in the sky. On the way to Houston, a small break at a rest stop quickly turned into a birding excursion. More Cardinals, Black Vultures, and a Black Crested Titmouse were among the handful of birds we saw at the rest stop. Not having a time frame to get anywhere really gives us the ease to enjoy the things like this that we like to do.
We finally got back on the road, but still focused on finding birds. Looking at our map, we spotted a refuge on the way to Houston; The Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR. So, as birders we naturally took the detour to explore. However, we discovered we were either unable to access any part of the refuge or not smart enough to figure out where the access was. The drive out there though was very pretty, as we drove on country roads and got to see a handful of ranches.
We make our way to Houston at about 3:30 in the afternoon and traffic was already slow and go. Realizing how big the city was and with traffic already testing Jeff’s patience, we decided to drive through and not stop. We ended up stopping in Baytown, Texas where we found a little park to make us a nice dinner and to play with the dog. We spent the night there at our trusty spot, good old Walmart!
While continuing our drive SE, we found another refuge to explore in the morning, the Anahuec National Wildlife Refuge, it is located along the coast of Texas west of the town High Island. There was so much to see there and so much area to cover, we ended up spending the entire day there. The refuge itself was absolutely gorgeous, one of the prettiest places we had seen. We definitely saw more birds than we could count too, and a lot of new species we had never seen as well. One particular bird that I was excited to see was the Roseate Spoonbill. A handful of them flew over us and then we were finally able to spot some resting in the grass later on. They are very pink birds and oh so pretty. (We also saw our first wild alligators and an armadillo.) The further SE we travel the bigger of a variety of birds we will see than we are use to in Idaho.
Today we continued along the coast and went into Louisiana making our way into the Sabine National Wildlife Refuge. As we were driving in along the coast we must have stopped a dozen times or more to look out into the water and onto to the beach at the various types of birds. We spent a good portion of our morning and afternoon cruising the coast and walking around the refuge areas. We’re now in Lafayette, Louisiana where we will stay for the night and try to go through all of the bird photos Jeff has taken over the last few days.