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Memories of Edinburg Scenic Wetlands

Centered in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, Edinburg is McAllen’s nearest neighbor to the east, where the Edinburg Scenic Wetlands are located. In March 2003, this first of nine World Birding Centers was opened to the public. Built on reclaimed farm-fields and next to the city’s effluent & floodwater ponds, this site is a sanctuary for wildlife and native habitats protected within an urban setting. The trail system is short, just 2.5 miles, but it encompasses 40 acres. Most of the trails available for exploring are concentrated within a 3/4 acre patch nearest the visitor center. Contained in this small section is almost a mile of trails winding through native vegetation and water features, with interesting birds around every corner.

There are large water bodies on the reserve, but I found many of the interesting birds near the ponds and canals were either too far away to photograph well, or obscured by dense foliage. However, the feeding stations were well stocked and provided me with some of my most satisfying photo-ops. Inca Doves and Chachalacas were readily available to my camera here. I may have gone overboard taking pictures of them.

I only visited here once on 2021-02-06, and my stay lasted just three hours. By day’s end, I’d met and photographed the following species: Anhinga, Black-Crowned Night-Heron, Cattle Egret, Curve-Billed Thrasher, Great Egret, Inca Dove, Long-Billed Thrasher, Northern Cardinal, Northern Mockingbird, Orange-Crowned Warbler, Plain Chachalaca, Purple Martin, Ruby-Crowned Kinglet, and Snowy Egret.

My limited time for exploring south Texas prevented me from revisiting this lovely location. I hope to return here one day soon and renew my acquaintance with this jewel and its occupants.

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