[Tweeters] Rio Grande Valley Questions

Todd Sahl toddsahl at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 17 17:59:36 PST 2017

Hi Rick,
You will have a great trip! 
One general suggestion is to stay at The Alamo Inn while you are in the valley. It is run by and for birders, is affordable, and really set up to make your birding days easy - they have coolers and ice packs and food you can take for pack lunches, all for very low cost.
Another thing is to be aware that the format for some of the National Wildlife Refuges and State Parks has changed since your book was published - the book describes big driving loops through those places that are now by and large closed to private vehicles. So plan accordingly. In some you can take a bus tour for a small fee, like at Laguna Atascosa NWR. Bentsen Rio Grande State Park has a bus that circulates the private loop there, so you can take it down to the hawk watch area and then catch it again later to get back to the visitor center.
Finally, I would definitely not hire a guide for the first part of your trip. If you spend the first day by yourself at Estero Llano Grande State Park you will probably get half of your target birds for the whole trip without much trouble. You could get a guide near the end of your trip if there are birds you haven't found yet and want some help, or just save your guide dollars for visiting a foreign country!
Todd SahlSeattle, WA

From: Rick Tyler <rhtyler at gmail.com>
To: Tweeters <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Sent: Tuesday, January 17, 2017 5:19 PM
Subject: [Tweeters] Rio Grande Valley Questions

Hello Tweets,
I am making my first birding trip to southernmost Texas the first week of April.  Two quick questions:
1. Any general suggestions are welcome. I picked up a copy of "A Birder's Guide to the Rio Grande Valley" and I am an habitual eBird researcher.
2. Should I hire a guide for my first day (or 2?). I did in Arizona last year and it got me off to a great start (props to Lauren Halsey). Does it help as much in south Texas? Any recommendations on a guide?
Thanks, and back to your fasciculated duck, which will probably be gone before I can get there on Saturday. --
Rick Tyler

​P.S. Falcated, from "falcate" meaning hooked or curved like a sickle.

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