Houston West Birding Sites

Houston, Texas

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Although the two parks and Addicks Reservoir are reasonably safe from development, birding habitats in the remainder of this area are fast disappearing due to expanding human populations. All the Katy Prairie and Warren Lake areas (land west of SH 6) are privately owned, and birders must not trespass. The 2,168-acre Bear Creek Park, managed by Harris County, contains playgrounds, picnic sites, 3 golf courses, equestrian facilities, and considerable wild acreage with trails. The park is open daily from 7 A.M. to 10 P.M. Key birds: Neotropic Cormorant, Anhinga, White and White-faced Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, Wood and Mottled Ducks, White-tailed Hawk, Crested Caracara, King Rail, Greater Roadrunner, and Red-headed and Pileated Woodpeckers are present year-round. Least Bittern; Wood Stork; Fulvous Whistling-Duck; Swainson’s Hawk; Chuck-will’s-widow; Scissor-tailed Flycatcher; Swainson’s, Kentucky, and Hooded Warblers; Painted Bunting; and Dickcissel occur in summer. American White Pelican; American Bittern; Snow and Ross’s Geese; Osprey; Bald Eagle; Ferruginous Hawk; Peregrine Falcon; Sandhill Crane; American Woodcock; Burrowing and Short-eared Owls; Say’s Phoebe; Vermilion Flycatcher; American and Sprague’s Pipits; Grasshopper, Henslow’s, LeConte’s, Fox, and Harris’s Sparrows; and Rusty Blackbird can usually be found in winter.

Houston West Birding Sites Professional Review and Guide

"Although the two parks and Addicks Reservoir are reasonably safe from development, birding habitats in the remainder of this area are fast disappearing due to expanding human populations. All the Katy Prairie and Warren Lake areas (land west of SH 6) are privately owned, and birders must not trespass. The 2,168-acre Bear Creek Park, managed by Harris County, contains playgrounds, picnic sites, 3 golf courses, equestrian facilities, and considerable wild acreage with trails. The park is open daily from 7 A.M. to 10 P.M.

Key birds: Neotropic Cormorant, Anhinga, White and White-faced Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, Wood and Mottled Ducks, White-tailed Hawk, Crested Caracara, King Rail, Greater Roadrunner, and Red-headed and Pileated Woodpeckers are present year-round. Least Bittern; Wood Stork; Fulvous Whistling-Duck; Swainson’s Hawk; Chuck-will’s-widow; Scissor-tailed Flycatcher; Swainson’s, Kentucky, and Hooded Warblers; Painted Bunting; and Dickcissel occur in summer. American White Pelican; American Bittern; Snow and Ross’s Geese; Osprey; Bald Eagle; Ferruginous Hawk; Peregrine Falcon; Sandhill Crane; American Woodcock; Burrowing and Short-eared Owls; Say’s Phoebe; Vermilion Flycatcher; American and Sprague’s Pipits; Grasshopper, Henslow’s, LeConte’s, Fox, and Harris’s Sparrows; and Rusty Blackbird can usually be found in winter."

Activity Type: Birding
Nearby City: Houston
Trail Type: Several options
Best Times: Best April and May for migrants and nesting activities; November to March for wintering waterfowl and sparrows
Local Contacts: Harris County Parks;
Local Maps: Texas Atlas & Gazetteer, DeLorme
Driving Directions: Directions to Houston West Birding Sites

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May 2018