Lately, Bud and I haven't been home much. The weather has greatly improved and we...well...The two of us were anxious to get back outdoors, hiking the trails and doing some birding! We drove to Rockport-Fulton Texas one day, over the Copano Bay, and onto Goose Island State Park in hopes that the largest land bird, the whooping cranes, would be out in that area. Along the north bay shore, there were TWO spotted. At such a far distance, the photos aren't that good, but they'll have to suffice for my 2016 year records. With the two whooping cranes, there were a few Sandhill Cranes and one lone great blue heron in the field. Of course, where there are cattle grazing, you're bound to see a few vultures too. Black vultures soaring high above the cranes and cattle. Where the car was parked, on the shoulder of the park road, several grackles were scrounging the grasses between the road and the bay water.
Great Blue Heron in the open field
After taking several photos of the cranes.... we hopped back in the car and drove to the state park entrance to walk the Lantana Trailhead through the massive Live Oak trees. Very few birds were active, we saw mockingbirds, cardinals, gnatcathers, sparrows, one very large hawk flew from one area, startling me...and disappeared in the branches to not be seen again...perhaps it was an owl. I'm not sure. We found a couple of glossy leafed magnolia trees among the oak and one lone pine. We both had hoped to see some white-tailed deer while in the woods or out in the open meadows...but no luck. On the return trek, to the car, I spotted a couple of cute black crested titmice/titmouses [plural is NOT tit-mice according to my guide books -BUT the wikidictionary shows this: NOUN titmouse (plural titmouses or titmice)]
Come take a walk with me through the woods:
Black Crested Titmouse