Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pleasure Island Part 1

  Pleasure Island is an 18.5 mile long  man-made island on the Texas coast. It was constructed by the  U. S. Corps of Engineers, using  deposits that were dredged during the construction of the  Port Arthur Canal, and the Sabine Neches Intracoastal Waterway. Port Arthur Canal was completed in 1899, and the Sabine Neches Intracoastal Waterway in 1908. The island is connected to Port Arthur, Texas by the Martin Luther King Jr. Bridge and to Louisiana by the Sabine Causeway. According to Pleasure Island Website , there are about 14,000 acres of which only about 2,200 acres are usable. This leaves about 11,800 acres of natural area.

  There are several areas of interest for naturalist that I will cover in future post. The North and South Levees, the south end of the island around the causeway , and the shoreline on the channel side.

Sabine Causeway Bridge between Pleasure Island and Louisiana
The above photo shows Causeway bridge and fishing pier on the south end of the island. Birds can usually be found around the pilings, boat ramp and the pier. The pier is part of  Walter Umphrey State Park.

 Here are a few photos I took last week in this area.

Brown Pelicans lined up along boat ramp rail.

Brown Pelicans

 The juvenile Brown Pelicans  in the photo below remind me of the pushmi-pullyu from Dr. Doolittle.
Juvenile Brown Pelicans 

Laughing Gulls on boat ramp.

Snowy Egret 

Neotropic Cormorant 

 In the photo below, from front to back are an Royal TernLaughing Gull , Herring Gull, and a Brown Pelican.
All lined up on the fishing pier.

Herring Gull

Laughing Gulls, Royal Tern, and a juvenile Herring Gull

Two Brown Pelicans feeding near the fishing pier. 

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Pleasure Island

 I made a couple of trips to Pleasure Island, on Sabin Lake to try and photograph a few birds for my Texas Nature Blog and was pleasantly surprised to find a few blooming plants. Here are a few photos of what I founds.

This Bushy Seaside Tansy ( Borrichia frutescens ) was mostly covered with dry seed heads, but a managed to find this one with a couple of boom left.

Borrichia frutescens - Bushy Seaside Tansy 
Borrichia frutescens

The Camphor Daisy was fairly plentiful along the south levee.

Rayjacksonia phyllocephala - Camphor Daisy