Friday, July 8, 2016, was a good day for birds and butterflies at Frontera Audubon even with the extreme heat and humidity.

John Yochum from our neighboring park stopped by and recorded this list of 23 species.

6 Black-bellied Whistling-Duck
6 Plain Chachalaca
1 Green Heron
1 Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
2 Killdeer
6 Inca Dove
11 White-tipped Dove
32 White-winged Dove
3 Mourning Dove
6 Buff-bellied Hummingbird
1 Green Kingfisher
1 Golden-fronted Woodpecker
1 Northern Beardless-Tyrannulet
5 Brown-crested Flycatcher
6 Great Kiskadee
2 Couch’s Kingbird
5 Black-crested Titmouse
4 Clay-colored Thrush
8 Northern Mockingbird
2 Olive Sparrow
4 Northern Cardinal
4 Great-tailed Grackle
8 House Sparrow

Chris also reported a Black-necked Stilt and two Ladder-backed Woodpeckers.

As for butterflies, we have Crimson Patches. And Mike Rickard saw a Boisduval’s Yellow, maybe the first one for our site.  Chris also spotted a female Silver Emperor.

All in all, it was a good day!


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July 9, 2016 · 12:33 PM


Wow, it looks as if we haven’t posted for quite some time! Well, we are alive and well at Frontera, trying to recover from the madness of two rare birds this winter and a wonderful fundraiser, Dine on the Lawn: Bohemian Nights, last week. (See our Facebook page for photos.)

Our faithful birder, Dan Jones, posted this list from Sunday, May 15th.

Frontera Audubon Center, Hidalgo, Texas, US
May 15, 2016 7:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling
1.0 mile(s)
42 species (+1 other taxa)

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck (fulgens) 15
Plain Chachalaca 10
Great Egret 1
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron 1
Turkey Vulture 2
Inca Dove 2
Common Ground-Dove 1
White-tipped Dove 5
White-winged Dove 15
Mourning Dove 1
Yellow-billed Cuckoo 3
Groove-billed Ani 1
Chimney Swift 5
Buff-bellied Hummingbird 1
Golden-fronted Woodpecker 1
Ladder-backed Woodpecker 2
Red-crowned Parrot 2
Green Parakeet (Green) 1
Eastern Wood-Pewee 3
Acadian Flycatcher 2
Empidonax sp. 1
Great Crested Flycatcher 1
Brown-crested Flycatcher 2
Great Kiskadee 2
Couch’s Kingbird 2
Loggerhead Shrike 1
White-eyed Vireo 2
Green Jay (Green) 2
Cave Swallow (Texas) 1
Black-crested Titmouse 2
Carolina Wren 1
Swainson’s Thrush 1
Clay-colored Thrush 2
Gray Catbird 3
Long-billed Thrasher 3
Mourning Warbler 1
Common Yellowthroat 2
Magnolia Warbler 1
Northern Cardinal 3
Great-tailed Grackle 2
Brown-headed Cowbird 1
Lesser Goldfinch 1
House Sparrow 1

We also have a new memorial arch and a bubbling water feature which is bringing in lots of birds.

Stop by 1101 S. Texas Blvd. in Weslaco to see us soon.  We are open on Tues., Wed., Fri., and Sat. from 8 AM to 5 PM, on Thursdays from 8 AM to 7:30 PM, and on Sundays from 12 noon to 5 PM. We are closed again on Mondays.

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We have had a female plumaged Crimson-collared Grosbeak on and off at Frontera since Dec. 29th! It was seen by two groups already this morning (Saturday). I am including Dan Jones’ bird list from yesterday so that you can see all the other species that are here as well. It is not the nicest of weather, but if you bundle up in your waterproof jacket, it is a good day to walk in the Thicket.  And the Visitors’ Center is nice and cozy with coffee and goodies awaiting.

Frontera Audubon Center, Hidalgo, Texas, US
Jan 1, 2016 9:50 AM – 3:50 PM
Protocol: Traveling
1.0 mile(s)
42 species

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck 28
Plain Chachalaca 12
Great Egret 1
Snowy Egret 1
Black Vulture 1
Turkey Vulture 150
Inca Dove 7
White-tipped Dove 12
Buff-bellied Hummingbird 1
Green Kingfisher 1
Golden-fronted Woodpecker 3
Ladder-backed Woodpecker 1
Eastern Phoebe 1
Great Kiskadee 2
White-eyed Vireo 2
Blue-headed Vireo 1
Green Jay 2
Black-crested Titmouse 5
Carolina Wren 2
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 2
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2
Hermit Thrush 3
Wood Thrush 1
American Robin 2
Long-billed Thrasher 4
Northern Mockingbird 10
European Starling 1
Ovenbird 1
Black-and-white Warbler 1
Orange-crowned Warbler 4
Northern Parula 1
Pine Warbler 1
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon’s) 4
Black-throated Green Warbler 1
Wilson’s Warbler 1
Olive Sparrow 1
Lincoln’s Sparrow 1
Swamp Sparrow 1
Northern Cardinal 10
Great-tailed Grackle 1
House Sparrow 4

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Mike and Ginny stopped by Frontera for a few hours on Friday and found over 30 species of butterflies, including two Julia Heliconians.  Here are pictures of a few of their finds.


P.S. We also have at least one American Robin hanging out with our Clay-colored Thrushes!

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All of us here at Frontera Audubon hope that your Thanksgiving was wonderful and that you are all safe and happy this holiday season.

We are open until 4 PM today and then resume our regular hours on Saturday.  Here are some pictures taken by Charles Warren of things you might see in the Thicket.

And here is a list of the 28 species seen by Dan Jones this morning.

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The fall migration is beginning and Dan found 40 species at Frontera on Monday.  Here is his list:

Frontera Audubon Center, Hidalgo, Texas, US

Aug 24, 2015 8:00 AM – 11:45AM
Protocol: Traveling
1.0 mile(s)
40 species

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck 6
Plain Chachalaca 6
Great Egret 1
Green Heron 1
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron 1
Gray Hawk 1
Solitary Sandpiper 1
Common Ground-Dove 5
White-tipped Dove 5
White-winged Dove 100
Yellow-billed Cuckoo 1
Chimney Swift 2
Buff-bellied Hummingbird 8
Green Kingfisher 1
Golden-fronted Woodpecker 6
Ladder-backed Woodpecker 2
Olive-sided Flycatcher 1
Alder Flycatcher 3
Great Kiskadee 6
Couch’s Kingbird 6
Eastern Kingbird 1
White-eyed Vireo 5
Green Jay 2
Black-crested Titmouse 6
Carolina Wren 5
Clay-colored Thrush 6
Curve-billed Thrasher 1
Long-billed Thrasher 1
Northern Mockingbird 2
Louisiana Waterthrush 1
Northern Waterthrush 1
Mourning Warbler 2
Yellow Warbler 1
Yellow-breasted Chat 2
Olive Sparrow 3
Northern Cardinal 4
Painted Bunting 1
Great-tailed Grackle 4
Lesser Goldfinch 2
House Sparrow 6

And here is the Northern Waterthrush:

r Northern Waterthrush Frontera 8-24-15 955A5391

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With his camera, that is!  There have been several reports of a bobcat in our Thicket at Frontera, and Dan Jones finally got a photo this morning while he was birding.

r Bobcat Frontera 5-24-15 955A6651

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The RGV Diabetes Association offers cooking classes at Frontera Audubon

cooking class, friendship, food, technology and people concept - happy women with tablet pc in kitchen

Adopting healthy eating and lifestyle habits is important for those diagnosed with diabetes, and a step-by-step approach makes those goals attainable, according to Diana Ramirez, executive director of the Rio Grande Valley Diabetes Association (RGVDA).

“Taking a step to prevent and control diabetes doesn’t mean food deprivation—you don’t have to give up your favorite foods. On the contrary, the RGVDA teaches how to cook healthier and take pleasure from your meals without feeling hungry or deprived,” she said.

The RGVDA, in partnership with Frontera Audubon, will now be offering cooking classes led by a registered dietician every other month for adults with or at risk of diabetes in the Mid-Valley. The first cooking class will be Tuesday, May 26th at 5:30 p.m. at the Frontera Audubon Society, located at 1101 S. Texas Blvd.

The free class will focus on the importance of a healthy diet for those with diabetes. To register for the class, please call the RGVDA office at (956) 782-1900. Space is limited.

Ramirez says with obesity as a leading factor contributing to diabetes and related complications, educational events such as these help not only raise awareness of this epidemic and disease in the Rio Grande Valley, but also encourage a lifestyle change.

“We can help you to make these changes by teaching you how to cook the right way. RGVDA will be providing you all with tips need to prepare a healthy lunch, along with delicious and healthy recipes,” she said.

Ramirez said the RGVDA hosts cooking classes and lectures in the McAllen/Edinburg area, but the organization saw the need to provide classes in the Mid-Valley.

“We saw that many who attend our lectures and cooking classes live in the Mid-Valley area, so we wanted to make these opportunities accessible to them,” she said.

“We partnered with Frontera Audubon because it is a beautiful, natural setting where participants can take a walk on the nature trail. It’s a beautiful and safe haven to walk and relax as well as view birds and butterflies,” Ramirez added.

The RGVDA is a local non-profit organization whose mission is dedicated to the prevention of diabetes and its complications through educational services, early detection and awareness.  The RGVDA’s focus is to bring attention to a growing health epidemic that affects one out of every four people in Hidalgo County, making it one of the worst-afflicted areas in the country.  Type 2 diabetes is preventable and manageable through a healthy regimen of exercise and diet.

Frontera Audubon is located at 1101 S. Texas Blvd. in Weslaco. The property is home to a15-acre nature preserve that includes walkable thicket trails, gardens, wetlands, and ponds. Frontera Audubon also houses a Visitor’s Center and the Skaggs House, a Texas Historical Landmark, built in 1927.

The mission of Frontera Audubon (a 501c3 nonprofit organization) is to preserve and promote the natural and historical environment for the education and enjoyment of the community. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 4 p.m. The preserve is closed Mondays.

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Bill wants me to post this pair of cardinals that he photographed yesterday.



And he also shot this lovely American Redstart.


Frontera Audubon is open from 8-4 on Saturday and noon-4 on Sunday.  Come by and see what’s flying.

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Frontera is hopping.  With birds, that is!  Our birders reported close to 50 species yesterday and 57 today.  Here is a happy Painted Bunting photographed by William B. Kennedy at the water feature.  Dan Jones reports seeing 7 on Saturday alone.



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