Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 12

By Susan Heath It was quite a week folks! On Monday John Wright escorted Alan and I and our Experiences Auction winners Jean Booth, Sandy Parker, and Liz Garney around West Galveston Bay in his very nice boat. The weather was beautiful for this excursion and I was very glad we had postponed from the original date which was the … Read More

Nature Notes: Thunderhead Prong

water rushing over rocks in a stream

The feeling, whatever it is, is totally enveloping. Your eyes take it all in… your mind relents to the heart and soul… allowing you to become one with the place. It is hard to break away… as if you get a feeling of restraint. You have found a place of sense so magical, so powerful… you must leave a part of you here.

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 11

By Susan Heath Well the weather really messed me up this week. We were supposed to do our American Oystercatcher Experiences Auction trip on Wednesday and on Friday I was supposed to go and count Black Skimmer colonies in West Galveston Bay. On Wednesday the wind was blowing 18 – 20 mph so I had to reschedule the auction trip … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 10

By Susan Heath Wind, wind, wind. Where does it end? I could go on but I’ll stop there. You get the drift. That’s a boat joke in case you didn’t catch it. There wasn’t an option to change our Wednesday monitoring day so even though the wind was predicted to be 18 mph we made a go of it. Alan … Read More

Nature Notes: Awaken Your Inner Scientist

By Jennifer Horton We’ve all heard the saying “two heads are better than one.” Well, it’s true. Even scientists agree, which explains why many of them now rely on volunteers to help them answer their most pressing questions. It’s called “public participation in scientific research (PPSR)” or more commonly, “citizen science.” Though in the case of citizen science, two heads … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 9

By Susan Heath On Monday I headed out to East Matagorda Bay with Taylor Bennett and Amelia Grider, our summer Beach Nesting Birds team, and Kaitie Braddock, our intern. I was pretty happy to get out there since we hadn’t been able to get out on last Friday due to the wind. The wind forecast today was not great either … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 8

By Susan Heath Well this week was a challenge, but before we get to that I think a lesson in wind driven tides is in order. The tidal range here on the Gulf Coast is only a foot or so but because of the orientation of bay inlets/outlets to the Gulf of Mexico and the shallowness of our bays, we … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 7

By Susan Heath Surprise! We have a nearly fledged chick! What? Who? Where? Patience my friends. On Thursday, I checked out West Galveston Bay with Alan Wilde, Jennifer Horton, and Dianne Forthman. While we were putting the boat in the water, we saw one member of the boat ramp pair on the dock. Hum. Where’s the other one? If you’ve … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 6

By Susan Heath On Monday, Alan and I went out to Bastrop and Drum Bays to do a reef survey and of course we checked on the oystercatchers while we were out there. It was cold! I was back in long underwear, waders, and two coats. 50 degrees with a north wind is not fun on a boat! In 2011 … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 5

By Susan Heath On Monday, I was able to check out the oystercatchers in Tres Palacios Bay and part of Matagorda Bay with Bob Friedrichs and our Experiences Auction winners Jean Booth, Liz Garney, and Alice Ann O’Donnell. The weather was beautiful and I was able to wear my sandals and no coat for a fantastic change. photo by Susan … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 4

By Susan Heath On Monday, Alan, Kaitie, and I headed out to do some reef surveys in Bastrop and Drum Bays. Since we were out there anyway, we decided to check on a pair of oystercatchers that nests in the very west end of West Galveston Bay near Alligator Point. I don’t get out there much because it’s too far … Read More

Oystercatcher Diaries 2019: Field Week 3

By Susan Heath Chicks! We’ve got chicks. Ok well maybe just one chick but it’s so cute! I know you can’t wait to see it! Ok take a couple deep breathes, calm down, and I’ll tell you the story. We had to rearrange the schedule this week due to the weather so we went to West Galveston Bay on Tuesday … Read More