Monday, March 30, 2015

The Whoppers are leaving, Back to Aransas National Wildlife Refuge

On close inspection the above image, Renitas, represents fifty whooping cranes in a flock and heading north.

Our winter visit here in Texas is drawing to a close and hitch itch has started to drive us crazy. Still we have a few more days which gives us time to get the rig ready. time to wish our friends safe travels, and time for a little more birding.
So Pam and Roy joined us for a trip back to Aransas National Wildlife Refuge and, somewhat surprised, we found that only two of the three hundred and eight whooping cranes have left! Making our usual stops we also found out that Jones Lake has water in it! The heavy rains have flooded quite a bit of the grass area and there were even a few ducks taking advantage of the area.
At the Towers we found two of the four whoopers were still putting on a display. Unfortunately a couple of birders tried to get closer and caused them to move to a more secluded site. It never fails to amaze me at how often the birding community seems to think nothing of disturbing the magnificent birds. Enjoy but do not disturb!
Stopping for lunch we walked down several trails but also discovered that the mosquito's are really healthy and really hungry. Guess that's just how it is in a salt marsh. Walking down Heron Flats trail the alligators have moved back into the flooded areas. The trail itself is still closed, part way down, as the refuge workers have yet to replace the boardwalk across a now flooded low spot.
One of the refuge volunteers had spotted a purple gallinue but when we attempted to hike to the spot the mosquito's quickly drove us back to the truck.
Its always a nice day there, but as we returned back to the RV park we found ourselves thinking of all the things we need to do. Wednesday is approaching and then its off to Louisiana for a month of family, friends, and oh the food! Clear skies

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