Planning Your Visit
COVID-19 Response: Sanctuaries are open every day from 7 AM to 7 PM. Admission is free for the remainder of the season. Restrooms are closed. Construction at Smith Oaks Bird Sanctuary is ongoing, and the Old Mexico Rd. entrance will remain closed till further notice. Visitors may use the Winnie St. entrance.
The Rookery at Smith Oaks
High Island Patch
Story of the patch and a photo gallery of all previous yearly patches. You can also order patches from previous years.
Best Time to Visit
Our High Island sanctuaries are open daily throughout the year. Peak spring migration season is from mid-March to mid-May. Numbers are highest during a "fallout", which sometimes occurs with a fast-moving cold front. During fall migration, late September to mid-October usually produce the best results.
No dogs or other domestic animals are allowed at any of the High Island Sanctuaries. The use of laser pointers is prohibited. No pishing or use of playback devices unless special permission is obtained. Drone photography is prohibited. Smoking is prohibited except in the parking lots.
Details of policies and rules for all the High Island sanctuaries including information for photographers and campers
Our Sanctuary Neighbors
Please be considerate of our neighbors! Birds can be found almost anywhere on High Island, including our neighbors' yards. Please do not enter their yards and be careful when you aim your binoculars, as some people get the idea that birders are looking in their windows and invading their privacy.
Oil Field Roads
Please note that the oilfield roads are temporarily inaccessible.
High Island Community
Please support local businesses and civic organizations as much as possible. Communities are more willing to support local conservation efforts if they feel protected habitat helps the local economy. See the list of accommodations, food, and other useful addresses compiled by Houston Audubon members.
Official website for Galveston Island
High Island visitor and lodging information for the Bolivar Peninsula
High Island visitor and lodging information for the Winnie area
Information about Chambers County outdoor activities