Readers’ wildlife photos

June 8, 2022 • 8:00 am

Send in your photos, as this feature is looking to become more sporadic.

Today’s photos come from Susan Harrison of UC Davis. Her notes are indented, and you can enlarge the pictures by clicking on them.

Colorful Birds on the Texas Gulf Coast, April 2022

If you haven’t spent your lifetime watching birds in the Eastern US, a good way to start catching up is to visit the Texas Gulf Coast in April, when the Neotropical migrants funnel through on their way north.  Last year I visited South Padre Island and its vicinity near the Mexican border.   This year I went to High Island and other sites closer to the Louisiana border.  Here are some color-saturated highlights from 2022.

Migratory Songbirds

Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris) eating a mulberry (Morus alba)

Who can see too many Painted Buntings??

Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea):

Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea):

Summer Tanager (Piranga rubra) also eating a mulberry:

Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea):

Prairie Warbler (Setophaga discolor):

Pine Warbler (Setophaga pinus):

Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher (Tyrannus forficatus):

Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus):

Yellow-Billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus):

Nesting Waders

Roseate Spoonbills (Platalea ajaja). Orange tails – who knew?

Great Egrets (Ardea alba). Green faces in breeding season!

Snowy Egrets (Egretta thula). Pink faces in breeding season!

Wading bird rookery at Smith Oaks Preserve on High Island, where spoonbills and the above egrets nest, along with Cattle Egrets (Bubulcus ibis), Tricolored Herons (Egretta tricolor), Neotropic Cormorants (Nannopterum brasilianum), and a few Wood Storks (Mycteria americana).

11 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. So many exotic-looking birds right here in the US. Especially the Spoonbills – they are just deliciously weird.

  2. In addition to all those glorious birds, I think I lost a pint of blood to the hoards of mosquitoes on High Island.

  3. Gorgeous photos! That Scarlet Tanager is so striking.
    The green face of the Great Egret is just beautiful. It’s a lovely green.
    I wonder what color it is when not in breeding season.

  4. What a great set! I’ve never been to High Island but I understand it is somewhat like Point Pelee here in Ontario: a place where the geography funnels migrant birds into high concentrations, much to the delight of birders.

    Thank you.

  5. Beautiful photos of beautiful birds. (Though I first read “the Neotropical migrants” as “the Neurotypical migrants”, which is not exactly neurotypical in and of itself.) It does look like an amazing place to visit.

  6. These were all wonderful photos. That place looks like bird heaven! The green “breeding” face of the egret was especially striking to me. Thanks!

  7. That photo of the indigo bunting is fabulous. Liked the pic of the scarlett tanager too. Actually these are birds I’ve seen here. The indigo nearly had me out the window. Too exciting. Interesting about the face coloring.
    Thank you for an exciting and informative showing.

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