Beach and beach birds kept our attention yesterday. Also, no signal. So, we are at the library doing a quick blog. Thirty mile drive to get here at Aranas but we’ll be looking around the town, tool
The beaches here so different from Pacific beaches. All dunes. We took a walk with a ranger and he says they are a natural dune “prairie.”
Volunteers here keep the beach clean and I picked up this mass to toss away and he explained to us that this mass is made of all once living creatures. What looks like a yellow wire is actually a piece of whip coral. Feather kelps and twigs and shell worms. I was pretty amazed, but, it still is ugly. The birds like it though, and flies lay eggs in it for the birds to feed on. Same goes for jelly fish.
And, this white jelly fish wasn’t much to look at either. Nature in balance is a fascinating process I might add.
This is a type of clam shell that is very fragile. Still, it buries it’s point deep in the sand and predators grab it and get a mouth full of fragile shell. The clam feeds on plankton.
Sanderlings are common here and constantly move. It’s hard to get a picture of them.
This is a herring hawk. We saw many of them flying. This was the only one we saw on the beach.
Two volunteers took us on a ride about the area to see birds. He also pointed out this debris washed up on the National Shore here from a hurricane. Old buoy’s that have rusted and broken loose, mostly. But, sometimes they find tanks of chemicals other hazardous materials.
One major fresh water pond was loaded with ducks, several types but mostly redheads. I didn’t notice my camera was out of adjustment (off settings) and my pictures during the tour were mostly out of focus.
We were told the name of these beautiful striped ducks, a male and female. But, it is enough to juggle cameras out a car window, pick out the breed from the bunch and get a decent picture. My brain was all thumbs.
This duck is a somewhat blurry spoonbill.
And a blurry redhead.
Our guide drives right onto the beach. In Texas, a beach is considered a public road and all road rules apply. Thus, no ATV’s are allowed on beaches which is a blessing in my opinion.
This unusual bird moved very quickly, but I got a look at its face.
This is a type of tern or plover.
We moved on to Laguna Madre, the inland side of Padre Island and watched the pelicans dip and play. They, like most birds, mate for life.
This is a laughing gull.
We returned to the motorhome, had dinner and then went for a night walk on the beach.
The sun had already set and turned the foam on the beach pink.
This blue heron also looks pink.
This little buck watched us warily from the dunes above. What a nice day.