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Best Place to Bird Watch: Aransas National Wildlife Refuge

March 29, 2014 at 10:02 p.m.
Updated March 28, 2014 at 10:29 p.m.


Best Place to Bird Watch: Aransas National Wildlife Refuge

When it comes to bird watching at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, a lot of people are familiar with the whooping cranes.

But park specialist Felipe Prieto said a really cool phenomenon, known as the migrant fallout, is a spectacular event people should not miss.

The refuge was voted best place to birdwatch in the Crossroads.

Every year, when migrant birds return from Mexico and South America to breed, they encounter strong winds and just fall out of the sky.

"They can't fly against the north winds, so they literally fall out of the sky," Prieto said.

While you can't pinpoint an exact moment it will happen, it typically occurs from February to March, he said.

"The refuge being here provides habitat for when those fall outs occur," Prieto said. "They will stay about a week or so and let the north winds pass; they rest and feed and replenish their reserves."

The refuge offers a 16-mile vehicle route with multiple trails and observation decks to view wildlife from.

Aransas Wildlife Refuge

1 Wildlife Circle

Austwell

361-286-3559

Hours: Daily 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset.

First Runner-Up

Riverside Park

476 McCright Drive

Victoria

361-485-3200

Second Runner-Up

Port Lavaca Lighthouse Beach

700 Lighthouse Beach Road

Port Lavaca

361-552-5311

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