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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for High Island, Texas, United States

Apr 27, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery

this is our final visit to Smith Oaks rookery, we have been very blessed to have been able to see the progression of the nesting season on these magnificent birds. We got to see how the Snowy and Great Egret chick have grown since we first saw them nesting, saw their eggs and saw newly hatched chicks. The process is continuing and we will not be able to see all the new chick fly for the first time; however, we got to see more than we had expected. A great time visiting this very beautiful rookery with all of the variety birds and seeing...

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Apr 27, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery - Alligator

Alligators are both a blessing and a hazard here at Smith Oaks rookery, they keep the various vermin that would kill the Rosetta Spoonbills, Cormarants, Snowy Egrets, and Great Egrets and they would eat their eggs as well; however, if one of the birds gets injured and can not fly anymore or ventures to close to the Alligator, the Alligators will get them as we have seen in our two previous visits.

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Apr 24, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery

We are making our third trip to the Smith Oaks Rookery on this occasion we got to see Rosetta Spoonbill chicks who are about 4 to 7 days old, Rosetta Spoonbills in their nest with newly laid eggs, we got to see the Great Egret chick who are now about 21 days old, boy did they have grown, we are really enjoying our visits to this world renown rookery, each time we have encountered people from Japan, Europe and South America.

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Apr 24, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery - Purple Gallianule

A new bird made it’s appearance at the Smith Oaks Rookery, the Purple Gallianule, it has a bluish purple cast to its feathers, it is like those cars that change color as the sun hits it from different direction. Most of the Purple Gallianule were hiding in the bull rushes. We did get to see a couple.

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Apr 7, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery

Our plan is to visit this rookery as much as we can to see the nesting cycle. We saw a lot of nest building, mating rituals between the Rosetta Spoonbills, Cormorant chick and Great & Snowy Egret chick no more than a couple of days old. They grow quite rapidly.

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Mar 17, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery

The Rookery in Claybottom Pond in Smith Oaks was a big surprise. We didn't have the foggiest idea that it would happen when Claybottom Pond was included in the land Amoco generously donated to Houston Audubon in 1994. Claybottom is kind of a funky pond that was started in 1936 when dirt was needed for the railroad bridge over the newly dug Intercoastal Waterway. The pond was immediately used to enhance the community's water supply. It was enlarged to its present size in 1967 to supply water for the sulfur extraction facility northeast of...

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Mar 3, 2017 - TX-High Island - Smith Oaks Rookery

In High Island TX is a rookery called Smith Oaks, it is owned and maintained by the Houston Audubon for migrator birds - Cormarans, Snowy Egrets, Great Egrets and Rosetta Spoonbills (our favorite). The bird start to next in the rookery around early March and will be there until mid to late May. We happen to be in the area this year and will have the great pleasure of seeing the birds nest, lay eggs, see the hatchlings and then young birds. On our visit today there was a lot of activity from Cormaran hatchlings, nesting activities to...

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Mar 13, 2013 - Smith Oaks Rookery

We spent another day birding, this time at the Rookery at Smith Oaks in High Island. Jerry is going to have a very hard time getting me to leave Texas with all the birds I am seeing. :-) I keep thinking each one of the bird refuges we visit is the best ever, and then I keep finding better ones. Now I understand all the bird talk about Texas, it is a birding paradise. I could not even count how many spoonbills we saw today, it was so many. Just one of my pictures had at least 30 in it. We also saw birds building nests, mating, males dancing...

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Mar 7, 2013 - High Island, Texas

We visited the tiny town of High Island today. We are getting ready for the huge migration of birds that visit the area in the spring. The Houston Audubon Society has 4 sanctuaries at High Island: Boy Scout Woods, Smith Oaks, Eubanks Woods, and the S.E. Gast Red Bay Sanctuary. Boy Scout Woods is the headquarters, which is staffed by volunteers during peak spring migration season from mid-March to mid-May. Smith Oaks is the largest sanctuary and home to the Rookery. High Island, with its substantial wooded areas unlike elsewhere on the upper...

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Nov 23, 2012 - High Island, TX

High Island is a place on the Gulf of Mexico near Houston that is known as a bird refuge. Although it is off-season for migrations, we walked the trails at the Anahuac Bird Refuge nearby and saw many hawks & eagles, water birds, and an alligator. It is the end of the dry season. In the spring migratory birds from Central and South America come north to the Yucatan Peninsula. When they run out of land they take off at sundown for a 600 mile 14-18 hour flight north over the Gulf, reaching land the next day at places like High Island, TX....

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Apr 7, 2012 - Anahuac National Wildlife Reserve

The first stop we made was at the Skillern Tract of the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge, and it was a doozy. There were flooded fields (presumably rice fields) on either side of the road with birds galore. We set up the scope and spent over an hour identifying lots of ducks, shorebirds, herons, ibis, and stilts. That was the high point of the day, and we’re now on our way back to the RV park. The rest of the destinations were a combination of places we couldn’t find and ones that were duds, but Skillern Tract made up for them.

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Apr 6, 2012 - HIgh Island, Texas

We spent another night at Village Creek State Park and enjoyed wonderful shade—that we won’t find at either High Island or Galveston. We arrived in the afternoon at High Island RV Park which turned out to be very good for a commercial park—beautifully landscaped and right in the middle of all the High Island birding places. About 4:30 we decided to walk over to the Boy Scout Woods, one of the destinations on the Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail. It turned out to be the one in about every four stops that is a winner. Wow! They had some...

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