Nature Trip Blog

Nature Trippin’ Texas Raptors

Aplomado Falcon

Nature Trip guides have been visiting and leading “exploratory ” adventures to Texas for many years as we plan some exciting trip packages in the near future. Along with super hospitality, this grande state has a lot to offer nature lovers and those seeking beauty in its wild open spaces. The birding is excellent!

HAHA_April_LAtascosa_0006_100dpi-409x396Add colorful resident subtropical and temperate species with the amazing neo-tropical migration that move through here and you can end up with perhaps the best birding in all of North America in spring and fall. The rest of the year ain’t too shabby either with each season bringing in a new cast.

Meet some of the Locals:

RAPTORS, Texas style…

CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0323_100dpi-600x344 CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0370_100dpi-273x345 HAHA_May_MartinRch_TX_0158_100dpi-510x388 HAHA_May_MartinRch_TX_0180_100dpi-600x478CRCA_LAtascosa_TX_April_090_100dpi-495x525CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0137_100dpi-525x349CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0123_100dpi-375x347CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0266_100dpi-585x372CRCA_May_MartinRch_TX_0321_100dpi-296x375You may already know we have a thing for raptors, so we’ll begin with some falcon and hawk images, many of which we captured on our most recent Nature Trip to South Texas in May 2011

The Lone Star State has more raptor
species than any other including a tiny
but resurgent Aplomado Falcon >>
population concentrated in the Boca
Chica and Laguna Atascosa region

Another gorgeous raptor
which is specialty in Texas
and southern Arizona
primarily is a Parabuteo:
Harris’s Hawk

This long legged, long tailed
hawk is known to
cooperatively hunt small
mammals and birds in small
familial groups

streaked and mottled

A much more common falcon that
graces the south and central Texas
skies and quite a character is the
Crested Caracara.

They can change the color of their
facial skin from yellow to pink to
orange in seconds

Caracaras are often found in groups (they primarily feed on carrion) and then may exhibit rather bizarre territorial dances and postures as in some of the photos below

White-tailed Hawks are primarily birds of Mexico but they also do quite well in the Rio Grande Valley and along the Texas Gulf Coast

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