thrushes have been the exception, expeclally the Swalnson's Thrush. That bird has
been seen everywhere and In numbers. For Instance, in our yard In Bellaire 2 to 5
Swalnson's have been seen every day since April 16, up to 3 Wood Thrushes also, and
most days a Veery or two and a Gray-cheeked Thrush. The numbers in our yard started
dwindling about the 2nd of May. The songs have been the delight of our lives for the
past couple of weeks: early In the morning has broughtus the flute-like notes of the
Wood Thrush, and the musical song of the Swainson's has been heard from early morning
to dusk. A neighbor's mulberry tree just the other side of our back fence has provided us with a feast for the eyes, with Indigo Buntings, Cedar Waxwlngs, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, Northern and Orchard Orioles, all four thrushes, Tennessee Warblers
(_also in numbers, 8 to 10 some days), White-throated Sparrows and American Goldfinch,
and scarlet and Summer Tanagers visiting It day after day. The mulberries are almost
^"e I J" occasional Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Swalnson's Thrush was still being
seen by May 5.
BRAZOSPORT REPORT by Sherry Col I Ins
n^n/8+[Uac7' l977 SP00NBILL carried an Item about the formation of a new birding
™' ™e Brazosport Birders. Sherry Collins has consented to be THE SPOONBILL re-
tles) 9rOUf>' and fr°m +ime +0 +,me we wHI have her news of +he,r activl'-
On April 19, the Brazosport Birders held their regularly scheduled meeting at the
Museum of Fine Arts. Tom Collins gave a program of taped bird calls of 20 species
commonly found in this area. Our meetings are held on the third Tuesday of the
month. Anyone interested In further details please contact me at 265-4857.
Our field trip to the Freeport Municipal Park on April 2 caught some of the early migrants—parula, hooded, black-and-white, prothonotary, and blue-winged warblers.
Many In our group are new to birding, and this was their first experience with spring
migration. Needless to say, they were thrilled with their first sightings of the
brilliantly colored warblers.
Our first group effort in a bird count was rather frustrating. We decided to participate in the Hawk Migration Watch scheduled for March 24-26. The weather didn't
cooperate, and visibility was so low that the count had to be called off. We tried
again the next two weekends, but rain and fog kept the count to zero. A spur-of-the-
moment count organized when we saw broadwings coming in to roost on April 4, netted
over 200 broadwings in 2 hours the next morning. Acciplters were seen coming in to
the Dow Nature Trail late on April 24th. The next two days large numbers of accipi-
ters, mostly sharp-shinned, Mississippi kites, broadwings, Swainson's and 2 ospreys
were seen as they flew north across Flag lake. Reavis Johnson called in a sighting
by his son of 2 swallow-tailed kites over the Angleton intermediate School.
We've experiencedone fall-out of warblers. On the afternoon of April 20, after the
severe weather of that morning, Tom Collins and Jim Haddox found 22 species of warblers at the Freeport Muncipal Park. A search of the same area the next morning, in
gorgeous weather, turned up only 10 species.
EASTER VACATION IN THE VALLEY by Jim Morgan '
During Easter vacation, Glenn and Penny Cureton and I made an enjoyable birding trip
to the Rio Grande Valley and lower Texas coast. Your SPOONBILL editor requested that
we share the highlights of our trip with'you. ."..We left Houston at 5:00 a.m. on Monday, April 4 and made our first stop at Refugio to look for the Green Kingfisher.
This proved unsuccessful so we continued south until Riviera where we observed 30-40
Fulvous Whistling Ducks at the roadside pond along with several other duck species.
Our next stop was the first roadside park In Sarita where we easily found the Tropical
Parula Warbler along with a few migrants and a Greater KIskadee. The second roadside
park in Sarita produced three Vermilion Flycatchers and numerous Lesser Goldfinch plus
an assortment of central Texas coast resident species. The remainder of the trip to
McAlI en.produced ducks at roadside ponds, two Caracara, Swinson's Hawks and a White-
tailed aTSng Highway 77. A quick trip late that afternoon to Santa Ana NWR produced
an excellent viewing of a Gray Hawk, and a Bobcat bounding in front of our car. Tuesday morning found us back at Santa Ana where we found most of the Valley residents,
Including two Least Grebes on Willow Lake. We also saw about 40-50 Black-bellied
Whistling Ducks, White-tailed Kite again, two Buff-bellied Hummingbirds, and two birds,
commonly seen 6n the UTC, Whip-poor-will and Swamp Sparrow, which are not so common
at Santa Ana at this time of year. At Santa Ana we witnessed two flocks of 35-50
Broadwinged Hawks rising on early-mid morning thermals, and another Bobcat. The
following day we set out for the Falcon Dam area and we observed an Osprey on Hwy 83
west of McAllen. West of Roma we found 6-10 Brown Jays along the Rio Grande, a pair
of fishing Ospreys, and three Ringed Kingfishers. Farther west below the dam we found