Immature Black-bellied Plover

In Galveston, 51st Street intersects Harborside Drive on an overpass underneath which features some large retention ponds and a lot of railroad tracks. Jim Foster’s Gulf Coast guide book notes this as a birding spot. I see American Coots here every Winter along with a variety of water foul fowl. This singular plover was accompanied by lots of Coots, a few Northern Shovelers, a couple of Mottled Ducks, and one or two Pied-billed Grebes.



The Northern Shoveler is a female. The plover took off after my first exposure and very loudly alerted everyone to my presence there. I must admit I had to research the ID on this bird and it took me a few minutes before I recognized that bill as plover-like and not sandpiper-like. The juvies will keep you on your toes. I kept thinking maybe that’s a Solitary Sandpiper (being the only one present) so my status as rookie birder is secure, ha!

Meanwhile, over at Corp Woods…

Red-eared Slider

I was happy to see a turtle at Corp Woods yesterday since the water feature there had completely dried up during our little drought this Summer. I saw but did not successfully photograph at least one each of House Wren, Brown Thrasher (they must be wintering here!) and Ruby-crowned Kinglet, which I did not see clearly but I did see them last week in the same spot. They certainly moved like RCKI. All in all pretty quiet out there. Skeeters are still active.