Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Texas 16 - Finale

I'd strategically positioned us at the Three Rivers Inn and Suites near Port Arthur so I could have a last session at Sabine Woods on the morning of the 29th.

I arrived at dawn and had a nice 3 hours to mooch around the woods. Thankfully the mosquitoes were having a lie in! I had the place to myself. I made for the drip and 2 Louisiana Waterthrushes were still present. Other birds started to appear.

Black and White Warbler
Orange-crowned Warbler
Hooded Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Northern Parula

I couldn't get a snap of any of them, unfortunately. Reactions dulled! lol.

I did manage a quick pic of a distant Downy Woodpecker...

I also bumped into John Haynes who lives in Port Arthur and birds SW almost daily during migration. Someone's got to do it! Great bloke, laid back and knowledgeable. He told me some great stories...

1. Cottonmouths sometimes wrap themselves around the birdbath at the drip and catch the birds as they bathe...not great for the visiting Birders...or the birds!! He showed me his grabbing device bought from Walmart, which he uses to catch the snake and put it in a bucket. he then takes it to the saltmarsh and releases it. Works well, but on one occasion the snake didn't play fair and as he tipped the bucket up it turned and went for him!!!
2. The woods contain wild pigs that can be very destructive. One day he was walking a trail when he came across a large male complete with tusks! Fortunately after a stand off it went on it's way.

3. There's a decent sized pond in the woods which I'd walked along a few times. He enlightened me that it contained THREE Alligators!!!

Problems you don't get in Blighty!

10am came. I said goodbye to John and told him I hoped to see him again in the future. I returned through the Valero oil refinery...

...and took a last look at the amazing Rainbow bridge which joins Texas with Louisiana...

I joined Louise back at the Motel, we packed and set off for the airport. Another amazing Texas odyssey completed.

So that's it! Hope you enjoyed my ramblings. I aim to "do the numbers" and a summary shortly.

Stay tuned...

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