Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, Texas, United States

Apr 7, 2020 - Over 14,000 hawks at Hawkwatch

Date: April 7, 2020 Weather: cloudy am, drizzle; sunny pm, very humid, almost calm winds Temperature: start 73º High 87º Wildlife count: Year List: 229 Birds: LOTS When we drove up onto the levee to drop off our chairs and supplies, we were met with a very large kettle of hawks. After looking carefully, we recognized that they were different – with the scope on them, we determined that they were Mississippi Kites, and throughout the day, almost 250 crossed over the levee – the most we have ever seen! Got the chairs set up and soon we were...

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Apr 6, 2020 - Rainy Monday, big hawk count

Date: April 6, 2020 Weather: cloudy, drizzle, humid Temperature: start 68º High 82º Wildlife count: Year List: 229 Birds: Out at Hawkwatch and sat for 2 hours with only 3 birds – Mike E. joined us. When the rain began around 10:30, we came indoors, where we worked on the volunteer handbook. Mike called us a little before noon urging us to get up to the levee quick! We ran up there, just as the clouds were beginning to break up, and the fog began to lift. There were kettles and streaming hawks covering the sky. For the next hour, all we...

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Apr 5, 2020 - Palm Sunday at home

Date: April 5, 2020 Weather: cool, rainy Temperature: start 61º High 70º Wildlife count: Year List: 229 Birds: Swallow-tailed Kite We were up early this morning for Palm Sunday worship – breakfast dishes waited till after worship. The message was an invitation to come to the table – we had the eucharist bread from Judy and juice – delightful! We planned to watch for hawks, but because it was raining, we jumped in the truck and drove over to the border patrol area – low clouds and drizzle prevented us from seeing anything and after a...

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Apr 4, 2020 - Rainy, cool day

Date: April 4, 2020 Weather: cloudy, rain Temperature: start 76º High 80º Wildlife count: Year List: 228 Birds: Blackburnian Warbler The forecast was for heavy rain, so we left early for HEB and arrived just a few minutes before it opened. The line stretched to the end of the shopping area, but we arrived with our masks on, got in line, picked up a cart, and were part of the first 100 to enter. We found most everything we wanted, then ordered breakfast from Whataburger to take home. After enjoying breakfast here, we decided to drive to...

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Apr 3, 2020 - Quiet hawk watch

Date: April 3, 2020 Weather: cloudy Temperature: start 76º High 89º Wildlife count: Year List: 227 Birds: Lovely day on Hawkwatch with the clouds and a breeze – only 350 hawks all morning. Completed laundry after lunch, then picked up our packages at Dispatch. All packages from now on will sit out in the garage for 24 hours to decontaminate. We used gloves to open our new chairs, and wiped bags with disinfectant wipes. Also prepared our masks to wear to the grocery – what a time we live in! Friends were over for happy hour, then steak,...

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Apr 2, 2020 - Cool day - state-wide lockdown

Date: April 2, 2020 Weather: cool, delightful Temperature: start 73º High 86º Wildlife count: Year List: 227 Birds: Lots of clouds on Hawkwatch today – spent the 9 o’clock hour on a refuge conference call – lots of good interaction. Dawn came up afterwards and helped spot, and the numbers were down – only around 600. Home and worked on the volunteer handbook after lunch, then relaxed. Dinner was brats and grilled beets – from one of the local fields! Good day.

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Apr 1, 2020 - Busy hawkwatch day - all high up

Date: April 1, 2020 Weather: mostly sunny Temperature: start 62º High 90º Wildlife count: Year List: 227 Birds: Busy day on the Hawkwatch, large kettles came through high, so tricky to count. Also, instead of just passing over on just the east side, hawks streamed over all the sky!!! What fun and it kept us on our toes. Enjoyed reading and relaxing this afternoon – happy hour with a group here. Dinner was grilled teriyaki chicken, grilled bread, sautéed veggies. Delicious. Texas governor declared a complete lock-down for the state –...

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Mar 31, 2020 - over 1200 hawks

Date: March 31, 2020 Weather: sunny, hot, humid Temperature: start 72º High 93º Wildlife count: Javelina Year List: 227 Birds: Warm day on the levee – lots of humidity. Mike E and his friend counted with us today and we counted over 1200 hawks – many were very high in the sky. After lunch, we grocery shopped – a sheriff stopped us on the way out Stewart to ask our destination, as we are locked down. We were out and back in less than an hour. Filled water bottles at the ware yard and mailed a card to Bernice. Home, relaxed indoors, as it...

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Mar 30, 2020 - Heating up again

Date: March 30, 2020 Weather: cloudy, warm Temperature: start 67º High 87º Wildlife count: Year List: 227 Birds: Brown-crested Flycatcher It was quiet on the levee – until – birds exploded into kettles about 10am. We were quite busy counting for an hour, then there didn’t seem to be any, except that the clouds were low, and I think we missed a lot of them. After lunch, we drove to Walmart – the biggest need was for Propel, an electrolyte addition to our water that helps deal with the heat of the levee, and it is getting hot! Relaxed for...

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Mar 29, 2020 - Cool & Rainy Sunday

Date: March 29, 2020 Weather: cool, showers Temperature: start 69º High 77º Wildlife count: Year List: 226 Birds: What a wonderful change – a cool rainy day for a change! We watched COR service at 7:30 – a delightful blessing to be able to be in worship. Prepared a special breakfast – eggs, bacon and cinnamon rolls – just a roll, but a treat since we cannot go out. The rain stopped and we walked up on the levee to the entrance to Santa Ana – just about a mile out. On the way back, we spied several huge kettles of Turkey Vultures, so...

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Mar 28, 2020 - Last hot day ...

Date: March 28, 2020 Weather: sunny, hot Temperature: start 76º High 92º Wildlife count: Year List: 226 Birds: Good day at Hawkwatch – several kettles when volunteer friends were on the levee. Long rest this afternoon, as the humidity was high most of the day. Dinner was left-over shepherd’s pie, and for dessert, a blueberry cheesecake with cookie crumbles.

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Mar 27, 2020 - Judy's party

Date: March 27, 2020 Weather: hot, windy Temperature: start 73º High 92º Wildlife count: Year List: 226 Birds: Common Nighthawk Out on Hawkwatch and relatively quiet day – beautiful early morning and slight breeze. We quit about 11:30 and headed to dispatch to deal with mail and Frandy’s keys and fill water bottles. Headed for Whataburger and ate in the HEB parking lot, not nearly has crowded as previously and we were able to get almost everything we wanted, including fresh fruits and veggies. Once home, we completed laundry and washed...

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