Events give residents chance to learn more about Texas birds
The Messenger

Spring is “for the birds” at the Museum of the Coastal Bend. The museum, along with the San Antonio Bay Partnership and the Friends of the Port O’Connor Library, is presenting two opportunities this month for Crossroads residents to learn more about the many bird species in Texas.

On Thursday, April 21 the museum will screen the documentary “The Messenger,” a film about how songbirds are impacted by humans. A reception will be held at the museum at 5 p.m., and Dr. Susan Heath, avian conservation biologist with the Gulf Coast Bird Observatory, will give remarks at 5:30 p.m. about threats to Texas’ coastal birds and how to help.

Following the speaker, the 90-minute documentary will be shown in VC’s Johnson Symposium. After the film, the public is invited to participate in a panel discussion on solutions for songbird survival. Panelists are Dr. Sandra Cochran, DVM, on the impact of spaying and neutering cats; Brent Ortego, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department wildlife diversity biologist, on habitat loss and enhancement; and Dr. Susan Heath, on protecting coastal bird species. This program is free and open to the public.

On Saturday, April 23, Crossroads residents have a unique chance to visit the Mad Island Marsh Preserve near Palacios. Participants will observe Smithsonian Migratory Bird biologists at work. At this site biologists study many different species of birds that migrate through Texas twice each year. The field trip runs from 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and includes lunch. Registration is $50 per person and can be completed through the museum’s website, Space is limited.

“This field trip is an incredible opportunity to see Texas birds up close and to experience the science that helps tell us about their lives,” says Isabel Ray, museum curator of education. “Here on the Coastal Bend, we’re lucky to be surrounded by so many species.”

To learn more about these and other museum events, contact Isabel Ray at (361) 582-2559 or

Published: Thursday, 14 April 2016

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