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Response to COVID-19

Houston Audubon Sanctuaries

All Houston Audubon sanctuaries are currently closed to the public. The stay home orders mandated by Harris and Galveston counties require the sanctuaries to remain closed through April 30, 2020. This does not include Bolivar Flats Shorebird Sanctuary, which is monitored by government officials. Please check back for updates.

Providing access to nature through our sanctuaries is one of the most rewarding elements of our work. We know how important it is to be outdoors and connect with nature, especially during stressful and troubling times.  It is heartbreaking for us to close our sanctuaries, but unprecedented times call for unprecedented action.  The Texas Open Beaches Act assures free and unrestricted public access to beaches and therefore beaches associated with Bolivar Flats currently remain open. These areas are monitored by government officials who decide whether the beaches remain open.  Unfortunately, we are not in a position to monitor areas of concern within our sanctuaries where people tend to gather such as restrooms, observation decks, the Rookery, and along narrow trails.  Our trails and observation platforms were not made with a need to keep a 6-foot distance as required by the CDC guidelines for social distancing, and we will do our part to comply and support what local leaders and health officials have asked of us. 

We are hopeful that the stringent measures being taken now will help all of us return to some sense of normalcy sooner rather than later. For now, birding near our homes, in our neighborhoods and along wider trails are a safer path given the situation we’re in.

We will enthusiastically open the sanctuaries as soon as we can do so safely and responsibly. We appreciate your understanding in this challenging time. 

Education Programs

We remain busy at work, but invite you to experience the joy of birds and nature from your own home. Stay connected with our digital library of resources with games, interactive activities, and learning tools. Webcams are also set up at Bolivar Flats Shorebird Sanctuary and Edith L. Moore Nature Sanctuary for a virtual birding experience. 

High Island Updates

The High Island Visitor Kiosk will be closed for the season. No day passes or merchandise will be sold.  All High Island sanctuaries are closed, effective 5 PM on March 24. They will remain closed at least through April 30, 2020. 

Birding Walks: Because of travel restrictions due to the coronavirus, the Tropical Birding guides will not be at High Island this spring. 
Boy Scout Woods Photo Blind: Closed for the 2020 spring migration season.
Event Cancellations: Land Sea and Sky at High Island, Flight in Focus, April BBQ Lunches
Virtual Opportunities: We are offering live broadcasts for the community to participate in spring migration in addition to the Bolivar Bird Cam which is already available. Our conservation technicians are bringing the birds to you by broadcasting Live from High Island on Facebook from Thursday to Monday at 8 am and 3:30 pm. 

Event Cancellations

All events and programs have been canceled through April 30, 2020, based on President Trump's recent extension of the social distancing guidelines.  Visit the calendar for a detailed list.

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