Sylvan Beach Park in La Porte, Texas

Sylvan Beach Park in La Porte, Texas was a pleasant surprise …sort of…

Having had some other things to do in La Porte, Texas, I decided to check out Sylvan Beach for the first time. ¬†Well, good news/bad news…of course I just “happened” to go when they were getting ready for a huge firework show and event with Clay Walker singing, etc. so the beach was closed! However, good news is that I was allowed to hurry and snap a few quick photos as a favor and will likely return soon ūüôā ! It seemed nice, quite and pretty. ¬†Just not sure if that was due to it being closed or not…stay tuned on that part ūüôā¬†

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What a clean and pretty little beach – it’s located at¬†636 N Bayshore Dr., La Porte, TX 77571
Hours:  Mon-Sun: 7:00am to 10:00pm
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Ruddy Turnstone –¬†The oldest recorded Ruddy Turnstone was a male, and at least 16 years, 11 months old, when he was recaptured and rereleased during banding operations in New Jersey in 2012. He had been banded in Delaware in 2001 (Source: ¬†AllAboutBirds.org)

Continue reading “Sylvan Beach Park in La Porte, Texas”

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My Red Cardinal (and Bird Obsession), at Bear Creek Park in Houston, Texas

As my daughter’s ‚ÄúHoosier‚ÄĚ Dad pointed out recently, the Northern Cardinal is Indiana’s Official State Bird and has been since 1933. However, Indiana is not alone…Illinois, West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, North Carolina, and Virginia all choose this as their State Bird!¬† The males are the beautiful red ones, the females are the brown ones with reddish wings. ¬†I just think they are beautiful and sound so cheerful! To me, they have always been associated with a sign of good luck and happiness! I always tell my kids, when I see my Red Cardinals, I know it’s a good omen and will be a wonderful day!¬†

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I was driving through Bear Creek park the other day and stumbled on this beautiful Red Cardinal about to take a bird bath so I had to stick around!

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Splish splash he was taking a bath…

Continue reading “My Red Cardinal (and Bird Obsession), at Bear Creek Park in Houston, Texas”

Mary Jo Peckham Park – Katy, Texas

Mary Jo Peckham Park at 5597 Gardenia Lane, Katy, TX 77493 is a beautiful 32 acre park in the heart of Katy, Texas that was built in 1991 and designed to provide fun for children, families, elderly and those with disabilities in mind. ¬†Want to play 18 rounds of miniature golf? Either bring your own gear or stop by the community center and borrow a putter and ball from them – FREE! Please call for their hours and rules but pretty sure you still just need a Texas Driver’s License to borrow or use the facilities.20170429-IMG_8649

Photo: Micah was having fun at the park with her Mom

Continue reading “Mary Jo Peckham Park – Katy, Texas”

LAST CHANCE FOREVER; Birds Of Prey Is Our Feature of Today!

Today’s post is all about Birds of Prey! While at the San Jacinto Day festival, I was¬†privileged to witness¬†a demonstration on Birds of Prey graciously put on by the San Antonio based, nonprofit organization – ¬†Last Chance Forever. ¬†They are¬†“dedicated to the rehabilitation of sick, injured and orphaned birds of prey, scientific investigation, and also just as importantly, the education of the public” (source: LastChanceForever.org). ¬†

The show was definitely *****5 Stars worthy!!!! 20170422-IMG_6937

Photo:  Ms. Kelly Rayner, Program Coordinator-Last Chance Forever, San Antonio,TX (Holding a Northern Crested Caracara).  You can really see the huge talons and wing strength!
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Photo: ¬†Northern Crested Caracara – What a truly beautiful bird! ¬†According to Rapture Technician, Mr. Ian Joplin, (and lifesaver for this article!), the Caracara’s are very intelligent birds that can hunt and eat carrion, sometimes incorrectly referred to as a Mexican Eagle.

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The trust level these birds have for both Ms. Rayner and Mr. Schmid is amazing as they showed us the bird’s release and immediate return back to both handlers.

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Photo: ¬†Ms. Kelly Rayner (Left)(Holding a A juvenile Bay-winged Hawk or Harris’ Hawk, both names are accepted) and Mr. Robert Schmid, Volunteer for Last Chance Forever (Right)¬†
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Photo: ¬†Here we a close up of the stunning juvenile Bay-winged Hawk/Harris’ Hawk

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This is a hybrid falcon, a cross between a Sakar Lanner and a Lanner Falcon20170422-IMG_6915
Photo:  This hybrid falcon, a cross between a Sakar Lanner and a Lanner Falconlitte was too cute!

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I wanted to give you a perspective on the size of this Barred Owl

Bird Number Three

What a truly remarkable and stunning bird!!! Isn’t it just magnificent!!!!

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This Barred Owl was just so captivating to look at I HAD to get a close up!

Bird Number Two

This red phase Eastern Screech Owl, (the red is a recessive trait to more common gray phase) was the cutest little thing ever!!!

Bird Number One

Look at the HUGE size of this magnificent Golden Eagle!

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Gorgeous isn’t it? What a rare opportunity for those of us in the audience to see such a bird!

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The Golden Eagle (above)

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Stunning isn’t it!

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So glad I was able to see this unbelievable demonstration!! I was sad to say goodbye to the Golden Eagle!

Note: ¬†If you would like to donate to this worthy cause or volunteer in some capacity, please contact info@LastChanceForever.org or visit their website at www.LastChanceForever.Org. ¬†Here’s an interesting article if you’d like to read more.

HUGE shout out of thanks to Mr. Ian Joplin, Rapture Technician, who helped make sure I was labeling the birds of prey photos correctly!

Thanks for your feedback! Max and I always love to hear your thoughts!

Elizabeth and Max

 

 

Kickerillo-Mischer Preserve Grand Opening!

Saturday, April 1, 2017 was the Grand Opening of The Kickerillo-Mischer Preserve¬†at 20215 Chasewood Park Drive, Houston, Texas¬†77070. ¬†It’s an 80 acre park with approximately 40 of the acres being Marshall Lake. ¬†There is a nice, wide, paved 1.7 mile trail that surrounds the lake along with beautiful trees. Various members of Harris County Precinct¬†4 worked diligently with the help of Prestonwood Forest Utility District and the generous land donation by Vincent Kickerillo and Kickerillo Companies and Walt Mischer, Jr.,¬†Mischer Investments. Harri County Commissioner of Precinct 4, Mr. Jack Cagle was instrumental in getting this project completed along with Dennis Johnston, Harris County Precint 4 Parks Administrator, Jim Robertson¬†and so many more that were mentioned at the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony that I couldn’t remember everyone – but thanks to all!!!

I had never been to a Preserve or Park’s Grand Opening so I decided this would be a first! So happy I went! There were free Pontoon Boat rides around the lake, free canoe rides, Multiple passenger Golf Cart rides around the 1.7 mile trail, cookies, sodas, water, food trucks, scavenger hunts and booths illustrating more about our parks, etc. ¬†I was fortunate enough to ride the second Pontoon boat I believe and had a super nice guide telling us more about the park and future plans including its’¬†eventual connection to the 100 Acre Wood Preserve. ¬†He said an alligator, bald eagle, beaver and lots of birds have already been spotted. ¬†I believe he was also a part of “Trails as Parks” which I plan to further explore as apparently if you can gather a group of 10 or more you are really able to capitalize on their services such as the pontoon boat ride, etc.

Anyway, had a blast – here’s the photos!

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Marshall Lake and the Pontoon boat (waiting for the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to begin).
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Food truck were ready for the celebration.
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Here’s the layout of the new park
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The Scouts presented our flags to kick off the Grand Opening
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Plenty of folks showed up for the Grand Opening
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Dennis Johnston, Harris County Precinct 4 Parks Administrator – you could see his passion towards this project and dedication.
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R. Jack Cagle, Harris County Precinct 4 Commissioner showing off the Park’s new patches designating the Park stripe. I will say Mr. Cagle was quite the entertaining presenter.
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Walt Mischner, Jr. and R. Jack Cagle
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Vincent Kickerillo, who was pretty darn funny and R. Jack Cagle
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Kevin Roberts, State Representative for House District 126 and his pretty wife, Hollie.  He and his wife seemed like very nice people.
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Let’s cut that ribbon and officially open this Preserve!
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Marshall Lake – taken while on the 1.7 mile track tour

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I’m ready to ride!
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Here we go!
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I feel awful that I neglicted to get this nice gentleman’s name, but he was a wonderful guide! You can tell how much he loves his job too!! Nice to hear that!!
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Booths set up to schedule the Pontoon rides, Golf Cart Trail Tours and more activities.  All of the booth folks were extremely nice and helpful!
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Lots of people opted to try canoeing and these two gentlemen were VERY patient and sweet helping everyone get in without tumbling over ūüôā

Thanks to everyone for the Grand Opening but more importantly, another great park and Preserve!

Until next time…thanks for visiting!!

Elizabeth and Max (he said it was too hot out for him to tag along-he’s such a spoiled little¬†pup! ūüôā )

YouTube by Spring Aerial Photography

 

Adventures in Birds

Adventures in Birds is a wonderful place that’s one of a kind in Houston! Opened in 1980, this is a bird lover’s paradise!

 

You’ll see this sign at 7414 Westview Drive, Houston, TX 77055 to welcome your arrival. ¬†There are so many bird cages there my lens couldn’t capture it all!

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This sweet little cockatiel greeted me in the bird room.

 

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Peachfaced Love Birds happily looked at me with curiosity – I think they’re so cute!
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Beautiful little yellow canaries (sorry about the pix but hard to do while in cage)
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Ecectus Parrot – Now that is one stunning bird!!! The color is amazing!! (They have a gorgeous red one too!)
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Want a little guy with some pizazz? How about this Red Fronted Macaw?
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This Cockatoo was so sweet and bashful looking!
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Of course they have (Budgies) Parakeets, Finches of all kinds, Canarys of all colors and tons more if you want a smaller bird.
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I loved the striking colors of this Rose Breasted Cockatoo!! Gorgeous!!
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Love that this guy is right at home Рnot a care in the world!! I also spotted two cute cats running around too Рone black and white sporting a super shiny coat who was rather curious and one doing what cats love to do Рnapping!

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This little one was visiting for grooming while I was there.  The lovely couple had him for over 20 years!!

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Beautiful right?!
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So you want some toys for your special little bird??? Pretty sure you will find it here!!
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Need any kind of seeds, treats, etc. – This is only a PORTION of what’s available here!
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It just goes on and on of the things you’ll be able to get your feathered friend!
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The nice gentleman working there on Sunday, took this huge guy/gal? out for a little photo shoot for me ūüôā – thanks! It’s a Blue and Gold Macaw who was very friendly.
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How could you not LOVE that face!?!
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What a character!!!

If you are in the Houston area and looking for bird grooming, need to safely board your feathered buddy or want to get a new friend, why not support this independent instead of some big chain store – these people care and are very knowledgeable! My Dad went to them for years for his African Grey or I may not have known they existed! Great place to visit and fulfill all your birding needs!

Thanks as always for taking time out of your day to stop and visit!

Elizabeth and Max (who is a bit scared of birds so he passed on this trip).

 

 

 

Do you know who I am? Birding help needed :)

Happy Monday! Whoo Hoo! Does anyone know what this bird is? I found this one (above) at Galveston State Park in Galveston, Texas.

Update:  The pink bird is a Roseate Spoonbill

 

I am new to birding and really a lack of “models” (for practicing photography) is what got me started into birding. ¬†That said, I am really not sure what any of these birds are so if you know, I’d appreciate it if you’d let me know ūüôā

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No clue about this bird either??? Help! (Can’t recall if I found this little birdie at Edith Moore Sanctuary or Bear Creek Park but both are in Houston, TX) ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† UPDATE: ¬†This is a Ruby-crowned Kinglet (female)
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Then there is this unknown little guy I found in Bear Creek Park in Houston, Texas     UPDATE:  This is a Tufted Titmouse

 

Have a happy and beautiful today!

Thanks for stopping by!