“I know you said you wanted to rest today, but do you think we could take a little drive?”
I’m back in Texas and the weather could not be better – 24 degrees celsius with clear blue skies. Tomorrow’s forecast is overcast and chillier. My trigger finger is anxious to get the camera going again. Ric agrees.
There is a spot, just off the highway between Aransas Pass and Corpus Christi, where we’ve seen lots of water birds and people fishing. Indian Point Park. We decide to make this our destination.
Pulling into the park, a car is stopped just ahead of us. We glance around to see that the bodies of water either side of the roadway are teeming with birds. Ric pulls over and I spring out.
A pair of Curlews wade in the water to my right, while an Avocet balances on one leg. To the left, Roseate Spoonbills snooze in the warmth of the sun, while flocks of Black-necked Stilts and more Avocets gather. Other shore birds mingle.
“We’ll come back,” Ric suggests and we pull around to the parking lot, facing onto the North Bay. To the right is a boardwalk extending out over the marsh and thick brush. To the left is a long pier extending into the bay.
I take the boardwalk, stepping slowly and quietly, in an attempt not to disturb the wildlife. The water here is shallow and the surrounding bush thick with stalky plants and rich green foliage. A heron-like bird is nestled across the way and when I raise my camera I am thrilled to see a Black-Crowned Night-Heron, a bird I had not yet encountered.
Other herons, including another Black-Crowned, either wade in the water or hunker in the green. We are mesmerized by the beauty of the place.
“Any Oystercatchers?” an approaching group asks.
“Haven’t seen any,” I offer.
“What’s that there?” one of the women points to the the thick underbrush.
I spot the tail end of a bird ducking into an opening. No idea.
The bird emerges farther along and our cameras snap. Not something I’ve encountered before, I am enamoured with its rich colouring. It decides to give us a show and bathes before us, splashing water and delighting us all.
“It’s a Virginia Rail,” someone proclaims. Another new bird to add to my list.
We stop to chat awhile and these fellow enthusiasts recommend a few more places to visit, but I am still feeling the lag from travelling, so we decide to save further exploration for another day. We will definitely make a return visit here.
(Choosing a destination each day makes life in Texas so rich. Destination is the focus of my challenge this week. I’d love it if you’d join in.)