Overview

This tour is offered in partnership with High Lonesome Birdtours.

The upper Texas coast provides an unrivaled birding spectacle in the spring as millions of migrants stream north on their way to their breeding rounds. Southern species are already setting up territories and the inland forests are ringing with songs. The coast can be alive with up to 30 species of warblers and it is not uncommon to record more than 30 species of shorebirds alone. Famous migrant traps like High Island, Sabine Woods, and LaFitte’s Cove concentrate vireos, thrushes, tanagers, grosbeaks, and of course the jewels of Neotropical migrants, warblers. This trip coincides with the peak of spring migration and will take advantage of the best time of year to witness this miracle of nature. Three full days birding migrant hotspots on the coast should net us a wide variety of songbirds and shorebirds, plus one full day exploring the Big Thicket regions will add southern breeders and pine woods specialties.

Of course, no visit to Texas would be complete without seeing the Golden-cheeked Warbler, an endemic nesting bird, and the endangered Black-capped Vireo. The trip will head west for two days to explore the riches of the Hill Country where, in addition to the two star birds, we will see a suite of birds different from the coast. In order to complete the loop through Texas’ richest birding habitats we will pass through Kingsville to locate several Rio Grande valley specialties, most notably Ferruginous Pygmy Owl, Tropical Parula and Northern Beardless Tyrannulet, plus Green Jay, Audubon’s Oriole and more. A short visit to the Rockport area will add many migrants and shorebirds.

Please note: these prices are subject to foreign exchange fluctuations.

Tour Facts Top Birds
Golden-cheeked Warbler, Black-capped Vireo, Woodhouse's Scrub Jay, Carolina Chickadee, Black-chinned Hummingbird, Wild Turkey, Yellow-throated, White-eyed, Blue-headed & Hutton’s Vireos, Canyon, Cactus and Bewick's Wrens, Northern Parula, Indigo & Painted Buntings, Blue Grosbeak, Greater Roadrunner, Curve-billed & Long-billed Thrashers, Pyrrhuloxia, Olive Sparrow, Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, Louisiana & Northern Waterthrushes, American Yellow, Worm-eating, Blue-winged, Black-and-white, Prothonotary, Orange-crowned, Tennessee, Nashville, Kentucky, Hooded, Yellow-throated, Magnolia, Blackburnian, Chestnut-sided, Pine, Hooded, Prairie, Canada, Bay-breasted, Wilson’s Warblers, Cerulean, Golden-winged, Mourning, Blackpoll, Cape May, Black-throated Blue & Black-throated Green Warblers, American Redstart, Ovenbird, Ferruginous Pygmy Owl, Red-cockaded, Golden-fronted & Ladder-backed Woodpeckers, Aplomado Falcon, Botteri’s, Cassin’s, Clay-colored, Lark, Vesper, Seaside, Nelson’s, Le Conte’s, Savannah, Bachman’s & Grasshopper Sparrows, Brown-headed Nuthatch.
Top Mammals
Brazilian Free-tailed Bats, Bobcat
Habitats Covered
desert and desert scrub, sub-tropical woodlands and palm groves, riverside vegetation, wetlands
Expected Climate
temperatures will range from mild to warm, but can reach 90F at this time of the year in the Valley.
Max Group Size
14 with 1 Rockjumper leader & 1 Highlonesome Leader
Tour Pace & Walking
moderate with a few shorter walks (two to three longer drives). A few early morning starts are required especially for the Hill Country portion of the trip.
Accommodation
comfortable hotels & lodges, 2 or 3-star
Ease of Birding
generally easy
Number of Species Expected
275
Photographic Opportunities
outstanding
Tour Route Map Route Map Client Testimonials

Both Stephan and Claudia gave attention to my desire to get good photographs.

Stephan Lorenz was a fantastic guide! He found all the birds; and also importantly, he made sure everyone was able to see them. He and Claudia were delightful to travel with. Stephan was also very knowledgeable about the general natural history of Texas and the state in general. It made the trip especially interesting. Stephan was stellar, the trip was great!

It is great to be traveling again, even if it is a short domestic trip. But I don’t want to sell the tour short. It really was an excellent short tour. We saw a great number of migrating warblers and shorebirds. Stephan Lorenz has an uncanny ability to find the one special shorebird or a rare migrating warbler buried in the bushes. He is also kind, informative and always helpful. And a special thanks to Claudia for her help with the driving and coordination.

Stephan Lorenz is a fantastic guide. I chose this tour for the itinerary and for the length of it. Stephan had designed the tour based on his extensive knowledge of the birds in the area, so we ended up seeing a variety of habitats and lots of birds. He is a superb naturalist with a solid academic background and knowledge of many taxa - herps, fish, mammals, plants - in addition to birds. He was good at dealing with the variety of participants, getting everyone on the birds and allowing photographers good opportunities for taking photos. He also handled the various emergencies of the trip with calm.

Overall it was a great trip. Stephan made sure everyone got good looks at all the found birds. Highly recommend it.

Dates, Leaders and Pricing
2022 DEPARTURES
2023 DEPARTURES
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