Estero Llano Grande, Frontera Audubon Thicket, and Valley Nature Center

Weslaco, Texas

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This site south of Weslaco, one of the “resource ” sites of the World Birding Center, is just beginning to be developed at this writing. It’s included in this guide because of its excellent potential. Operated by the local Audubon Society, The Frontera Audubon Thicket just south of downtown Weslaco is yet another of the many patches of woods in the Rio Grande Valley that local birders and visitors frequent for resident and migrant species—and in hopes of rarities. The Weslaco thicket commanded national attention in 1999 when a Blue Mockingbird, an extremely rare stray from Mexico, showed up. A delightful oasis in downtown Weslaco, the Valley Nature Center (VNC) will reward a visit on several levels. In the rear, trails totaling three-quarters of a mile wind among native trees and shrubs, the result of intensive efforts to revegetate the center’s 6 acres with species found in the area. Many plants are labeled, making the VNC a good place to visit early on a trip to the Valley. Here you can learn the names of some of the flora you’ll be seeing elsewhere as you roam the Rio Grande region.

Estero Llano Grande, Frontera Audubon Thicket, and Valley Nature Center Professional Review and Guide

"This site south of Weslaco, one of the “resource ” sites of the World Birding Center, is just beginning to be developed at this writing. It’s included in this guide because of its excellent potential. Operated by the local Audubon Society, The Frontera Audubon Thicket just south of downtown Weslaco is yet another of the many patches of woods in the Rio Grande Valley that local birders and visitors frequent for resident and migrant species—and in hopes of rarities.

The Weslaco thicket commanded national attention in 1999 when a Blue Mockingbird, an extremely rare stray from Mexico, showed up. A delightful oasis in downtown Weslaco, the Valley Nature Center (VNC) will reward a visit on several levels. In the rear, trails totaling three-quarters of a mile wind among native trees and shrubs, the result of intensive efforts to revegetate the center’s 6 acres with species found in the area. Many plants are labeled, making the VNC a good place to visit early on a trip to the Valley. Here you can learn the names of some of the flora you’ll be seeing elsewhere as you roam the Rio Grande region."

Activity Type: Birding
Nearby City: Weslaco
Trail Type: Several options
Best Times: Year-round; best in spring, winter also good
Driving Directions: Directions to Estero Llano Grande, Frontera Audubon Thicket, and Valley Nature Center

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May 2018