Padre Island, TX to Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, TX
After leaving Padre Island, I headed north up the coast, stopping for seafood in a small town. Unfortunately, their bay wasn’t opening for oyster harvest until the coming weekend, but I got to sample some other local specialties, with a side of hush puppies.
That afternoon, I got to Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, where I was hoping to spot some of the early Whooping Crane arrivals. While one pair had indeed arrived that week, they were staying deep in the refuge, in an area inaccessible by the casual visitor (as I was). I drove the loop road, though, and got out to walk at every opportunity. With the continued strong winds, only larger birds were flying, and they were staying low. From an observation tower, I got to watch ospreys fish in the ocean and herons on the adjacent flats. And… I came across a few alligators! It was a fun experience, but I’d like to go back sometime when the rest of the birds are aloft…