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Christmas Bird Counts

Houston - Upper Texas Coast Counts

  • Armand Bayou (TXAY)

    Come for the birds, come for the fun, see how many species we can find? Volunteers are needed in the field and in backyards for Armand Bayou's Annual Christmas Bird Count-2016. The count includes areas of LaPorte, League City, Dickinson, Seabrook and Bacliff (and lots of places in between, see map). We typically tally around 150 species and attribute much our success to the many dedicated counters each year! Our count circle has a great variety of habitats, including pockets of hardwood forest, grassland, wetlands, and water (open bay and ponds). Our unusual species in recent years have included Grace's Warbler (first Harris County record 2015) Piping Plover, Virginia Rail, Hooded Oriole (a local backyard), Rock Wren, Grasshopper Sparrow, Great Kiskadee, Green-tailed Towhee, Broad-tailed Hummingbird and more! This wouldn't be possible without everyone's involvement. Volunteers will meet at 6:30 AM at Armand Bayou Nature Center's auditorium and will hold our Tally Rally (after party) at a local restaurant, immediately following the days count. Volunteers will also be owling at Armand Bayou Nature Center and possibly other nearby areas as well. (5:00 AM-ish). Please contact Martha Hood and Andrew Hamlett at lazuli007@yahoo.com to register and get signed up for an area. Further details will be included and discussed upon sign-up. Also, please check out the Armand Bayou CBC Facebook community page at Armand Bayou CBC & Local Birding for up-to-date details as we get closer to the CBC (you don't need to have an account). Thank you!

  • Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR (TXAP) 12/20

    Wednesday, December 20 2017
    The Attwater CBC is a wonderful opportunity to bird the Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR as well as private property in Eagle Lake, TX. This CBC is open to all birders and is one of the highest inland CBCs for diversity in the country. In 2015, our species total was 177! A hot dinner will be provided, at the Refuge, for all participants following the event. If you are interested in participating, contact Sumita Prasad at sumita@utexas.edu

  • Beech Creek (TXBE)

    This count takes places in Tyler and Jasper Counties and includes Steinhagen Lake, the Beech Creek unit of Big Thicket National Preserve and Martin Dies State Park. Meet at the Corps of Engineers Picnic Area on FM92 immediately north of the intersection with FM1746 in Town Bluff at 6:30 AM. Sponsored by the Big Thicket National Preserve. Contact John Whittle (johnawhittle@aol.com, 409-722-4193) for more information.

  • Bolivar Peninsula (TXBP)

    This count circle in Chambers County includes High Island and Anahuac NWR. Newcomers are welcome to join! Compilers this year are Steve Mayes and David Sarkozi. If you are interested in participating, please contact Steve Mayes at sgmayes@hotmail.com.

  • The Brazoria CBC includes Bar-X Ranch, Columbia Lakes, Hudson Woods unit of SBNWR, Brazoria Reservoir, Harris Reservoir, and southern Nash Ranch. This count was done from 1984-1994 by the Brazosport Birders. In 2009, the count was successfully revived with 45 participants and 145 species recorded. Meeting point: contact area leaders for locations. Compiler: Tom Taroni at 979-297-5563 or taronitom@gmail.com.

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  • The Brazos Bend Count Circle includes Brazos Bend State Park, and a wealth of different ecosystems in adjacent lands. Many of the properties we survey are closed to birders the rest of the year. Rarities in recent years include Zone-tailed Hawk, Great Kiskadee, Green-tailed Towhee, and more. Birders of all experience levels are welcome, and there are many teams/areas to choose from. Strong leadership will be assigned for all groups and the park entry fee is waived for participants. The Count will be followed by our legendary BBQ Count Dinner and the Big Bird Award. Whether you're in the mood for a stroll in the park, or a backcountry hike, we've got a team for you! To sign up, go to our website at www.brazosbendcbc.com or contact compiler Justin Bower at justinbower@gmail.com. Our participants make the difference, so we hope to see you there!

  • Buffalo Bayou [west Houston] (TXBF)

    This is one of the few CBCs that is set almost entirely in an urban environment. The count circle does contain a few areas of undeveloped land that usually hold a few surprises since they are surround by development. The count circle is centered at the Houston Audubon's Edith L. Moore Sanctuary. It extends from Memorial Park on the east to beyond Hwy 6 on the west; from the Southwest Freeway at West Belt on the south to FM 529 near Jersey Village on the north. This area includes sizable chunks of excellent habitat: Houston Arboretum, Art Storey Park, Addicks & Barker Reservoirs, Bear Creek Park and Buffalo Bayou. It is possible to see up to 15 species of sparrows on this count, including the elusive Henslow's and Grasshopper Sparrows. Other "Special Birds" seen over the past several years have been: Hooded Merganser, American Bittern, Solitary Sandpiper, American Woodcock, Common Ground-Dove, Black Phoebe, Couch's Kingbird, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Spotted Towhee, Eastern Towhee, Rusty Blackbird, Purple Finch and Pine Siskin. We would like you to join in the fun and help us eclipse the high count of 132 species. There are two ways to participate: (1) Be a Field Observer - Join one of the teams in the field. (2) Be a Feeder/Yard Watcher - Because so much of the Buffalo Bayou CBC area is residential, Feeder Watchers (those who stay at home and observe their feeder, yard and/or neighborhood) are extremely important to the count and greatly increase the efficiency of the count by observing species that otherwise would not be seen, such as hummingbirds. Contact co-compilers Michael Williams, michael5531m@yahoo.com (preferably by email) or via phone at 832-723-0653, or Adam Wood, birdsondabrain@gmail.com, 713-515-1692.

  • Central Houston

    The Houston Parks & Recreation Department (HPARD) is excited to announce that we will be conducting another urban Christmas Bird Count --the Central Houston CBC -- right in the heart of Houston! Some of the locations visited in this count include: Hermann Park, Memorial Park, MD Anderson Prairie, Rice University Prairie, Hogg Bird Sanctuary, Buffalo Bayou Park, West 11th Street Park, Woodland Park, Sims Nature Center and more! All skill levels are welcome. We will have experienced birders from Houston Audubon and HPARD leading the groups. Please email Kelli Ondracek at kelli.ondracek@houstontx.gov if you are interested in participating.

  • Cypress Creek - Katy Prairie (TXCY)

    We will again meet at Paul Rushing Park. It is on Katy-Hockley Road in west Harris County. (Directions). If you have participated before, please contact your area leader directly. If you are new to the count or would like to switch areas please contact an area leader of your choice or Fred Collins. Anyone going with the North area or the KPC groups MUST sign a release or they cannot enter KPC property. It will save time if they bring a signed copy of the release form. I have maps, bird lists, and detail forms which I will send to area leaders. If you would like to have your personal copy of any of these documents just e-mail me and ask. FYI: Constable for west Harris County area 281 463-6666, west Harris County game warden Greg Johnson 713-702-1399, Waller County game warden Michael Blevins 979-221-7351. The greater Houston area game warden 24 hour dispatch number is 281 842-8100. For more information, please contact compilers Fred Collins or Kendra Kocab at klebwoods@hctx.net.

  • Freeport (TXFR)

    The count is consistently one of the top ten in the country and finds the largest number of species of any on the Upper Texas Coast. Habitat includes seashore, barrier islands, prairie & woodland. The circle is divided into eight areas, each with its own leader & unique habitats. (Count Circle Map) For information & assignments, contact compiler Mike Austin (mj_eh@comcast.net).

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  • Galveston (TXGA)

    Although this count has very limited land area and a particularly small amount of wooded areas, it still typically is a top 20 or near top twenty U.S. CBCs. This count is open to anyone who would like to participate and all areas need more observers. If you want to see some great birds, join us. This count undoubtedly produces the most species for the available land area (much of the count circle is water) of all U.S. CBCs. To participate please contact Richard Mayfield (rrichardm@verizon.net).

  • Houston [Baytown] (TXHO)

    This count includes the area around Baytown. All levels of experience are encouraged to participate! Area leaders please email your availability so we can plan accordingly. David Sarkozi and Stennie Meadours will be co-compilers. Those wishing to participate should contact Stennie (stenmead@aol.com). CBC Map by David Sarkozi

  • Huntsville [Walker Co.] (TXHU)

    Sponsored by Huntsville Audubon. Please contact Dan Jones at 936-295-7579 or Brenda Muncrief at 936-435-9937 to participate.

  • Johnson Bayou - SW Louisiana (LAJB)

    Johnson Bayou CBC has a rich history beginning in 1976 to present. Though the count is located just across the state line in Louisiana, most participants are from Texas and everyone is welcome. While much of the area is private, local land owners have allowed access to their property for this count, areas rarely birded and normally inaccessible to birders at other times offering a good chance for rarities. Areas covered include beach, coastal cheniers, marsh and grasslands. Johnson Bayou is located off Hwy 82 in Louisiana just across from Pleasure Island, TX (east of Sabine Pass). From Port Arthur take Hwy 82 east for about 15 miles into LA. Please contact Gary Kelley (garymke@sbcglobal.net, telephone 409-679-1616) for more information, assignments and directions.

  • Matagorda County (TXMM)

    Most of the count is on private land and participation in the CBC is the only way to gain access to some very productive wildlife lands. The diversity of the CBC is great and most sections have multiple exclusives. The CBC features extensive native grasslands, brushlands, floodplain forests, beaches and coastal marshes. We need skilled birders to scan for pelagics over the Gulf from land, skilled shorebirders to ride on boats to survey expansive mudflats and marshes of the delta of the Colorado River, and birders to survey narrow forest areas along the river for lingering neotrops. Contact compiler Brent Ortego, brentortego@hotmail.com or 361-827-4691 cell, for count assignments. Resources: Count circle map (static image), Interactive map (Google Earth required).

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  • Old River (TXOR)

    The count covers all points within 7.5 miles of Lake Charlotte. This is less than an hour's drive east of Houston. The count circle for this count centers in Lake Charlotte in Chambers Co. and takes in almost all of the Wallisville Project, all the way out to the far back in of Trinity Bay and north into the southern part on Liberty Co. For more information contact count compiler David Hanson: DHanson139@aol.com.

  • Orange County (TXOC)

    Habitat covers marsh, woodlands, and the Cow Bayou watershed. All are invited, even if you are not an experienced birder or are only able to bird for part of the day. Feeder watchers are welcome to participate. Let us know in advance and we will find a suitable group for you to join. The more pairs of eyes in a group, the more birds will be seen. Contact Gary Kelley (garymke@sbcglobal.net, telephone 409-679-1616), for more information.

  • San Jacinto Wilderness (TXSJ)

    Juxtaposed across three counties, this unique inland circle is situated where Big Thicket meets Coastal Prairie. A broad and complex ecotone, it's laced through and through with wild rivers and bottomlands, as well as extensive farms and subdivisions. On this count, kayakers course down the most scenic rivers in the region, while other bands of birders tour subdivisions by car. A huge wilderness park is its linchpin, and large private ranches offer a birding and hiking adventure that can be the equal of anywhere in the UTC. Welcome to the San Jacinto Wilderness. For more information please contact David Henderson at embrenhar1@gmail.com (compiler - cell: 281-827-3729), or Bruce Bodson (bruce.bodson@yahoo.com, 832-882-1657 - cell) if you wish to canoe/kayak.

  • San Bernard NWR (TXSB)

    This unique count provides opportunities to bird areas of the refuge not normally open to the public, including the Bludworth tract along Cocklebur Slough and the nearby McNeill tract which boasts the official state champion Live Oak. Also open for counters is the state's Nannie Stringfellow Wildlife Management Area. We have rail buggy slots open for those hoping to see Yellow and possibly even Black Rails. Although this count still provides the small count atmosphere, it has plenty of big count diversity with 190 or more species most years. Contact the co-compilers Ron Weeks (ronweeks@sbcglobal.net or phone evenings 979-299-0066) and Jennifer Wilson (jennifer_wilson@fws.gov or phone daytime 979-964-4011) to sign up.

  • Sea Rim State Park (TXSR)

    This count in Jefferson County includes Sea Rim SP, Texas Point NWR, and parts of J.D. Murphree WMA and McFaddin NWR as well as the Sabine Pass area. Please contact us in advance, as most groups go directly to their assigned areas. Sponsored by Golden Triangle Audubon Society. Contact John Whittle (johnawhittle@aol.com, 409-722-4193) for details.

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  • Spring Creek (TXSC)

    This count, sponsored by the Piney Woods Wildlife Society, covers a 15-mile diameter circle that is roughly centered in The Woodlands at I-45 and Rayford-Sawdust road exit. This includes The Woodlands, much of Spring, part of Hooks airport, part of Klein, and down to FM1960. Feeder watchers are also encouraged to participate. Contact compiler Claire Moore at cdmoore3i@gmail.com for more information or to sign up.

  • Trinity River (TXTN)

    Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge will be hosting the 20th Annual Trinity River Christmas Bird Count for northern Liberty County. Areas to be counted include the Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, Tarkington Prairie, and Gaylor Lake. Some folks will bird the "bottoms" so be sure to bring a sack lunch, rubber knee boots and other appropriate outdoor clothing. The wrap-up dinner will be held at the Texas Seafood & Steakhouse restaurant in Cleveland. Birdwatchers of all levels are welcome. If you have any questions you can contact the compiler Stuart Marcus at 936-336-9786 or stuart_marcus@fws.gov.

  • Turkey Creek (TXTC)

    This count in Hardin and Tyler Counties includes the Turkey Creek and Hickory Creek Savannah Units of the Big Thicket National Preserve. Meet at the Big Thicket Visitor Center on US69 at FM420, about 7 miles north of Kountze at 6:30 AM. Sponsored by the Big Thicket National Preserve. Contact John Whittle (johnawhittle@aol.com, 409-722-4193) for more information.

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