Galveston Island is one of the top locations in the country for birding. It has a rich variety of habitats - beaches, wetlands, grasslands, woods, ponds, and bays - in a small area that are home to many common year-round species, as well as numerous others that visit briefly or for part of the year.
Birds visit en-route from and to Central and South America, north in the spring, south in the fall. Most pass on through after stopping for food and rest, but some spend their summers on the Island and breed locally. Galveston in fact sits astride the 95th meridian, the dead center of the trans-Gulf migration route, and is just at the point in the circum-Gulf route where many birds veer northward.
The Island is also an important wintering ground for numerous species that spend most of the year farther north.
The Nature Tourism Council, in partnership with the Park Board, developed a guide to the area’s top birding locations. Different birding habitats such as beaches and bays, bay marshes and wetlands, coastal prairies and upland wood motts are described in detail. A map and seasonal checklist of birds sighted are also included. Click here to download a PDF of the Great Birding guide, or pick one up from tourism brochure racks throughout southeast Texas.
From the Blogs
Watch Your Step!
Published: Thursday, June 13, 2019
Many shorebirds nest right on the ground by creating a small scrape in sandy or gravelly areas in which they lay well-camouflaged eggs. Read more.
Published: Tuesday, June 04, 2019
Inshore fishing for redfish and speckled trout is great and offshore fishing for a bunch of species is great too. Read more.
Boat Tour to North Deer Island This Saturday
Published: Wednesday, May 22, 2019
Join Kristine Rivers aboard the SS Seagull II, a 45-passenger open-air catamaran, for this special birding and photography tour that will give you the rare chance to view the North Deer Island Rookery. Read more.
Turtles About Town
Published: Friday, May 17, 2019
Turtle lovers of all ages have the opportunity to see nearly 20 colorful Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle statues that have popped up around the island in 2019. Read more.
Top 5 Colorful Migrants To See Now On The Island
Published: Friday, May 03, 2019
Kristine Rivers and pals snapped some incredible pics of the Island's flying migrant guests. Read more.