This is a great opportunity to see the breeding songbirds of the southern part of the Big Thicket. We will focus on the area north of Silsbee to look for the breeding birds of the area. This is typically a half-day trip. We plan to look for the nesting species of the area – Hooded, Kentucky, Pine, Prairie, Prothonotary, and Swainson’s Warblers, Yellow-breasted Chat, White-eyed, Red-eyed and Yellow-throated Vireo, Indigo and Painted Bunting, Gray Catbird, Summer Tanager, Acadian Flycatcher, Brown-headed Nuthatch and others. We will likely not find all the listed species, but most years we find a good selection of them. Swainson's Warbler is a particular target of this trip, and we have often been rewarded with excellent views of this normally very secretive species on this field trip. Yellow-breasted Chats have often been seen perched high up in the open. This area also has breeding Prairie Warblers, typically in plantations of about 20-foot tall young pines. Typically we bird Gore Store Road east as far as Beech Creek, Firetower Road, and Matigwa Road.
The meeting time and place will be at 7:00 a.m. (note the necessary early start if we are to find the breeding birds!) at the shopping center on the northeast corner of the intersection of FM92 and FM418 in the northern part of Silsbee. To reach this from Beaumont, take US 69 north and then US 96 north. Take Business 96 into and through downtown Silsbee. When Business 96 turns right, continue straight on FM92 for 3/4 mile to the shopping center. We normally finish sometime around noon or shortly after.
Birding is a generally outdoor activity, but on this trip we will be in vehicles traveling along the roads of rural Hardin County until we see or hear birds or find habitat that is favored by our target species.