24 March 2013

I-20 Wildlife Preserve

Without any intentional birding time scheduled, and no photos (whoops), I cobbled together a Texbirds post from March 18th's quick jaunt around the darn-new and mind-boggling site of Midland's new birding hotspot. Anyone wishing to attempt a birding trail, preserve, park, photography trail, whatever... this is a prime example of things done RIGHT. Quality blinds, trails, boardwalks and overlooks - not to mention feeding stations.


Folks unfamiliar with the new-ish I-20 Nature Preserve should really investigate it! Midland is somewhat short on birding options, but this one is conveniently wedged between Business 20, I-20, Midkiff and the loop; this means you will have zero sense of isolation (sounds like you're between two major highways, in fact), but the birding - and butterflying - definitely makes up for the noise of the machinery and general human chaos that surrounds it.

In a mid-afternoon jaunt on the 18th, Matt York and I kicked up nearly 30 species along the ~2 mile trail (mostly paved, some boardwalk) that runs the perimeter of the place. I lost count of blinds after the 4th or 5th - there are a few overlooks (2?) and a really sweet hawk tower. There are at least 2 RGV-style feeding stations that appear to be maintained daily as well. Someone has been writing roughly daily observations on their dry erase board and most of the bird/bug IDs appeared correct ("grackles" ...ah well)


Also, pretty sure it's my new favorite place simply because it bans noise making and noise makers. Guess if you can't hear yourself think due to nearby human activity, the birds should get a break from artificial noise as well.

Happy trails,

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